After several decades in business and more than 20 years in retail bookselling, it’s fair to say I have never been more surprised than I have been by the City of Rutland.
I’ve been familiar with Rutland for years, having married in Middletown Springs more than two decades ago. As an independent bookstore owner, I was very familiar with Book King, which was a great community asset for well over 40 years. I knew Steve Eddy, and was impressed by his success at Book King.
Despite that, I was not prepared for the incredible outpouring of support for a new bookstore that has been demonstrated by the greater Rutland community. Since we first began talking with Green Mountain Power in November, I’ve been privileged to meet dozens of community leaders, business owners, and book lovers who have gone to tremendous lengths to recruit Phoenix Books to Rutland.
I have been continually surprised by the efforts of GMP, Mark Foley, Jr., the Downtown Rutland Partnership, Mayor Louras and the dozens of people who have already pre-bought $1,000 in books to demonstrate their support for Phoenix Books Rutland.
Even more surprising–and exciting–has been learning about the tremendous, ongoing revitalization of downtown Rutland. When we made the decision to open a Rutland store, we were immediately confronted with a lack of available locations downtown, the rebirth of the city center having already filled virtually every storefront. Equally impressive has been the abundant pride and optimism I have seen in Rutland, a community we can hardly wait to begin to serve.
I am confident in the success of Phoenix Books Rutland, and look forward to working with the community, local leaders and the business community to help continue the successful renaissance of downtown.
Mike DeSanto, co-owner, Phoenix Books