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The Wingspan

The official student news site of Norristown Area High School

The Wingspan

The official student news site of Norristown Area High School

The Wingspan

Unveiling a Literary Gem: Recycle Read Repeat Brings Book Shopping to Heart of Norristown

Angela Smith (left) and Kate Jaworski stand in front of a diverse selection of books at Recycle Read Repeat at 208 Cherry Street in Norristown.

In an era of digital content and e-readers, the allure of physical books is often overlooked. However, in April 2023, Norristown was graced with the grand opening of Recycle Read Repeat, a new bookstore that promises to rekindle the love of printed words in the hearts of our community.

The concept of a bookstore began as an online venture in 2021 during the pandemic, catering to book lovers. The owners, Angela Smith and Kate Jaworski, avid readers themselves, saw the potential to create a community of book enthusiasts who could explore, discuss, and recommend literature without leaving the comfort of their homes. However, as time went on, they realized the value of tangible connections and the magic of holding a physical book in one’s hands.

The decision to transition from an online platform to an in-person bookstore was not taken lightly. The owners were aware of the challenges faced by traditional bookstores in the age of e-books and online retail giants. Nevertheless, they believed in the enduring charm of a physical bookstore and the unique experience it offers to customers. 

I would say it was fun and hard,” said Smith of the transition. “I loved designing the store and curating all of the books to put in the store. But at the same time, we had a ton of work to do for the online part of the store. We had a great team to help us transition though.” 

Nestled on 208 Cherry Street, Recycle Read Repeat exudes a welcoming aura from the moment you lay your eyes on its quaint exterior. Stepping inside, you are immediately transported to a world of literary delight. The interior of the bookstore is a symphony of wood, leather, and paper. The shelves are stocked with an extensive collection of books, ranging from classic novels to kids’ books.

The store’s facade is adorned with large, vintage-style windows that allow natural light to stream in, casting a warm glow on the beautifully displayed quality used books within. It’s a place where one is enticed to enter, whether you are a bookworm, an occasional reader, or just a passerby.

One of the bookstore’s standout features is its merchandise. It’s a delightful extension of the reading experience, offering a range of items to celebrate literature. From bookmarks and tote bags to clothing and necklaces with quotes from books, the bookstore provides a variety of options for bibliophiles to express their love for books

But Recycle Read Repeat offers more than just books and merchandise; it’s also a hub for the community. At the heart of this bookstore’s success is its commitment to community engagement, and a variety of activities reflect this dedication. Some of its flagship programs are book clubs, teen writing clubs, story time for kids, and open mic nights that cater to different genres and interests, providing a platform for readers to come together and share their perspectives, and form meaningful connections. It’s a place where like-minded individuals can gather to share their passion for literature, fostering a sense of togetherness and intellectual growth in our town.

Bookstores are intimate places for neighborhoods. The books and merchandise in a bookstore should reflect the community. They are places where people should feel comfortable to browse without the pressure of buying anything. I think they add a lot of charm to a neighborhood,” said Smith.

Furthermore, the bookstore leveraged digital platforms for marketing while maintaining a strong local presence. An interactive website allows customers to browse the inventory of books, place orders, and stay updated on upcoming events. Instagram and TikTok are used not just for promotional purposes but also to actively engage with the community, sharing book recommendations and building anticipation for in-store events.

Collaborations with Norristown Public Library and cultural organizations such as Expressive Path were also key to the marketing strategy. By aligning with community events and initiatives, Recycle Read Repeat integrated itself seamlessly into the fabric of Norristown, creating a symbiotic relationship that benefited both the business and its patrons.

Smith and Jaworski are passionate about the written word and dedicated to helping customers find the perfect book. Whether you’re searching for a gift, exploring a new genre, or in need of a recommendation, they are always ready to assist. If you need a book that is not in the store, you can always make a request to them and they will be happy to help you.

So, the next time you’re strolling down Cherry Street, make sure to stop by Recycle Read Repeat. Whether you’re a dedicated bibliophile or just looking for a good book, this charming bookstore will welcome you with open arms and a world of stories waiting to be discovered. In this bookstore, Norristown has found not just a store, but a literary treasure trove and a community gathering place rolled into one.

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About the Contributor
Adanahi Hernandez
Adanahi Hernandez, Staff Writer
Adanahi is a proud Nicaraguan and senior of NAHS who loves singing, writing and reading. She is also a passionate soccer team member, combining her artistic and athletic interest with enthusiasm and skill. She loves hot coffee and Ruben Dario's poems.

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