YES! The volunteer-run, collectively owned radical bookstore and activist center Bluestockings is reopening in a new location after shutting down over the summer and fall.
In July, Bluestockings announced they were shutting down their original location at 172 Allen Street for both pandemic and non-pandemic-related reasons—but now they’ve found a new home at 116 Suffolk Street, which is more than twice the size of their old location. Accessibility is a priority in building the new space, which will feature an ADA-compliant bathroom, lower café countertops and expanded café seating, a platform lift in its café area, and wider aisles and exit paths for wheelchairs.
Though the space has not been finished, Bluestockings has reopened Thursdays through Sundays for the holidays; five customers at a time, socially distanced, can shop in the new location’s front foyer. “We’ve had so many come in and say hello and welcome us back, and we’ve had so many new neighbors give us well wishes,” Red Schulte, a member of the collective that runs Bluestockings, told Bedford + Bowery.
Bluestockings has served as an events hub and gathering place for queer, trans, and sex worker communities for 21 years, and when it opens again, it will continue to be a place for visitors to share ideas, provide mutual support, and envision and enact new ways of living. And, according to Abygai Peña, Bluestockings’s director of marketing and communications, there’s already “a lot of magic happening.”
Bluestockings is currently trying to fundraise $150,000 for its buildout, as well as for an updated software system. Over $55,000 has already been raised via GoFundMe, and $50,000 more has been raised separately—you can read more about the fundraiser and contribute here.
[via Bedford + Bowery]