The Book Jewel: Grand Opening on Independent Bookstore Day
Fostering Community Through Westchester’s New, Inspiring Bookstore
August 27, 2020
Courageously opening their doors at a time when many small retailers are calling it quits, The Book Jewel is a community bookstore located in the heart of Westchester’s flourishing Triangle Shopping District at 6259 W. 87th Street.
Bringing an independent bookstore to Westchester is the lifelong dream of Karen Dial, of Drollinger Properties, and Sean Moor, an experienced bookstore owner, who have poured their hearts and souls into creating a space that celebrates the diversity and shared promise of the community we share.
“A new bookstore is always a cause for celebration,” said bookstore manager Sean Moor, “and we couldn’t’ think of a better gift to the community than to open our doors on Independent Bookstore Day – Saturday, August 29th.”
The grand opening will be a socially-distanced event and all precautions will be taken to avoid the spread of the coronavirus by limiting the number of people in the store at any one time and enhanced cleaning protocols. Nevertheless, Moor promised entertainment, surprises and fun as well as a bookstore that will truly be a community jewel.
“I’ve spent my life in bookstores and I can honestly tell you that The Book Jewel has the best and most thoughtful selection of any independent bookstore of our size,” said Moor of the location, which will feature three levels: a roughly 5,000-square-foot ground floor divided between bookstore and café; a smaller second story that will double as a demonstration kitchen and event space; and a rooftop deck with garden.
“Most importantly,” Moor continues, “a bookstore is a gathering place of people and ideas, whether you attend an author event, a poetry reading, or a book club, or wander the aisles alone, you should always feel connected to a deeper, and more meaningful world where everyone belongs and everyone has value. It’s a place that feels like home.”
“I wanted to create an environment that really inspired people to fall in love with reading,” said Dial, who owns the store with her brother, Jim Drollinger, and named it after their mother, Jewel. “My mother inspired me to develop a love of books when I was young, and I want to pay that forward by creating a place that makes reading fun. Our stellar literary staff will be on hand to provide individualized attention, a personalized collection of books and an intimate knowledge of the books and items we sell.”
The Book Jewel will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week following the grand opening on August 29. The eclectic shelves are filled with thousands of new and gently-used books, thoughtful gifts and one-of-a-kind, artisanal products produced by local boutique companies.
Food will also play an important role. A restaurant, called Tomat, will open in 2021, and will be run by Dial’s daughter, Natalie, and her partner, Harry Posner, who share a passion for food and both have backgrounds in health. The restaurant will feature a rooftop garden and event space, promoting dishes made with seasonal and local produce; house-made pastries, breads and ferments; local beer, natural wine, and excellent coffee, according to Natalie Dial.
“Westchester is a great place for a bookstore; and on days when the farmers’ market is open, the Triangle is buzzing with energy. We want this to be another treasure that puts Westchester on the map.” According to Moor, “The first thing people do when they land at LAX is head to In-N-Out, and we hope the second is head to our really great bookstore.”
Owners Karen Dial and Jim Drollinger, along with manager Sean Moor believe wholeheartedly in the magical ability of bookstores to change lives and uplift the communities they serve. It is with this in mind - that they have decided to open their doors during this difficult time rather than wait. They hope that after patient months of careful work that The Book Jewel will be like a cool rain after a long drought, bringing a promising bloom of community – which will be needed more than ever in the seasons to come.