Schwartz's Bookstore is so important because of the centralizing function it performs at this particular LOCATION in our village.
It is a central point of attraction in our business area here in Shorewood. And it can hardly be duplicated by any other imaginable and feasible enterprise in the near future. In a sense it reflects who we are and it reflects our village culture.
Who at Village Hall can say, yes, we shall save Schwartz's bookstore or no, we've decided to do nothing about it?
What about the incumbents, where do you stand? Let's hear from you.
I'm assuming that the whole block on Oakland where Walgreen's, Schwartz's bookstore and Pick-N-Save are located is being considered for redevelopment under the Shorewood Community Development plans.
Two other Schwartz's bookstores in other communities are being acquired by their present managers. But I guess it would be difficult to get the most optimistic of entrepreneurs to invest in the one on Oakland, especially if Shorewood is considering the placement of a new Pick-N-Save at that location on that same site.
If the Village Board can assure us that the building housing Schwartz's bookstore will remain there indefinitely and not be included in their redevelopment plans,
then a group can be organized to form a cooperative to manage it as Dave Tartarowicz has appropriately suggested.
Does anyone know how to acquire Schwartz's bookstore?
Do the members of the Shorewood BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT think that the closing of another store front in our BUSINESS DISTRICT is a good way to attract people to our shopping area?
In terms of a general decline in businesses operating in Shorewood, it may not be in the community interest to overlook or justify the lack of development of empty lots, delay in or cancellation of some of our development plans.
It may not be attractive to potential businesses nor uplifting to see a boarded up former restaurant building, businesses for sale, buildings with signs for rent and for lease.
Shorewood has become a local government of VIRTUAL REPRESENTATION, that's is, a government where citizens do not directly vote for whom they want to represent them.
Apparently few, and in this coming election, no one wants to seek office except those who are already holding those positions. At other times there are many who also seek position without being elected by the people.
It seems that Shorewood could immediately purchase what I've begun to refer to as The Village Bookstore and Coffee Room, while we are still able to negotiate with present management and personnel so they might stay on in order to maintain continuity.
This we must do to make sure we don't lose it. Then we could hold it until we could make more permanent arrangements. The manager could report to a small committee for the present time.
During the last week I've begun a specific study of what makes small bookstores successful.
First of all from a town design standpoint, successful small bookstores, as it seems to those locating and operating these enterprises, and merely from a locational standpoint is that they are fitted into a “small town ambiance.”
“Bookstore operations are no longer socially viable,” was a statement that took be aback, because it is contrary to things that I've been thinking and saying.
This is likely to be a true statement, but if it is, can any such statement be so unequivocal in its substance? Are their exceptions to this perceived reality? If not, then I'm completely wrong? And I've been known to be, as anyone might guess.
Representatives of Roundy's Corporation, as I've come to understand have become quite sensitive to Shorewood's needs as a community and have shown a willingness to work with the village.
It also seems that the managers of Schwartz's Bookstore would also like to be helpful as possible as they dissolve their interest in the bookstore enterprise.
For about a decade I've been talking about all the elements of community and those that we have here in Shorewood. These are beyond the function that our school system presents for our children and parents.
We've also been lucky to have had one of the Schwartz's bookstores located here in Shorewood to add other elements of community and a sense of centrality.
Yet highway and highway traffic flow through Shorewood, through the middle and on the edge of this otherwise quiet place.
No one seems to see a solution nor take action toward the dream of a creating a walkable community, yielding only to the “progress” of a more efficient, faster car movement.
I've most of my life been an observer and analyst.
I was not conscious of this at an early age. But now I can be classified as this kind of creature, thinking observing and analyzing.
David Tatarowicz has bravely taken the first steps to save our Village Book Store and Coffee Room. This enterprise is still functioning and will be until the end of next month.
For those who are interested in the intricacies of human nature and the politics of human behavior, February has been a good month to observe the “hyper-individualistic” nature of both community life in Shorewood and that in this great country.
Our sixteenth president put it this way; democracy is “of the people, for the people and by the people.”
By April, three incumbent candidates will regain their seats on the Village Board. And we didn't even know that they had lost their seats.
The Shorewood Village Board has been carrying forward ill-advised policies designed to provide a linear business district, being cut through by auto traffic dangerous to pedestrians, not a “walkable community” solution.
It is quite obvious to those involved in improving Shorewood's Business District and promoting its opportunities as well as to its dedicated observers that the basic economy of the commercial district does not exist in a vacuum.