Grand opening at bookstore

Published 11:50 am Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Leadership of the Barnes & Noble at Longwood, Longwood University and the Farmville community gathered to celebrate the bookstore’s new location on North Main Street.

The bookstore has had a storied history, according to speakers before the ribbon cutting.

Former Store Manager Louisa Lackey cut the ribbon before welcoming guests into the store. Ken Copeland, vice president for administration and finance, spoke during the ribbon cutting, noting that before the bookstore’s move to North Main Street, Lackey said the bookstore has been at six separate locations, with four being within the university itself.

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Copeland said the various locations for the bookstore have included within the university’s cafe area, in Blackwell Hall, at the Prince Edward and Virginia Rooms and most recently at the Midtown shopping center.

“We are home,” Copeland said about the Main Street location as participants applauded.

Current Store Manager Amber Clark said she has worked for Barnes & Noble College, the division of Barnes & Noble that owns the bookstore, for 13 years, and said the few years she has been with the Farmville store have had the most impact.

“(It’s been) the brightest spot of my entire career,” Clark said about her term at the bookstore.

Clark said in an earlier report in The Herald the process to move from the Midtown Landings location began in 2015. She said construction at 200 N. Main St. began in May 2016, a four-way project between Longwood University, Walk2Campus, Barnes & Noble College — a separate entity from the company Barnes & Noble — and the Longwood Real Estate Foundation.

Clark said the location on 200 N. Main St. had been a community bank in the 1940s. She said the companies worked with a historical board to maintain the location’s history.

Once the ribbon was cut, participants, including many students and members of the community, got to look around the store, enjoy chocolate buttercream cake by Mill Street Sweets and see balloon animals by Mike Klee of Black Ties Entertainment.

Earlier in the day, a book signing for Longwood faculty members Steven Faulkner and Craig Challender and hear music from students Taylor Carneal and Sam Taylor.

Lackey said she enjoyed the location and the festivities surrounding the dedication.

“Now this is the seventh location and the last,” Lackey said. “It’s … a wonderful store. It’s a beautiful location.”