Joyce Hinnefeld


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Keeping It Local in Phoenixville, PA

Last weekend I discovered a wonderful independent bookstore not far from Philadelphia, Wolfgang Books in Phoenixville, PA ( Thanks to store owner Jason Hafer for hosting me in the store on Saturday afternoon, and to the folks who stopped by to chat and have their copies of In Hovering Flight signed.

Phoenixville seems aptly named; it’s a former industrial town on the Schuylkill River that’s had a wonderful revival ( Wolfgang Books is located on an historic main street lined with restored buildings, all of them filled with beautiful restaurants and stores. Wolfgang Books is one of those stores where you want a copy of everything they have; Jason and his staff have clearly chosen—and displayed—their books with love. The space is glorious too. The day I visited the wide sun porch at the front of the store, normally a spacious reading room filled with comfy sofas, was set up for that evening’s reading by poet Elizabeth Bodien (

The store seemed part of something bigger happening in Phoenixville—the vital return to living and buying locally. As climate change worsens and fuel supplies dwindle, towns like Phoenixville and stores like Wolfgang Books are powerful reminders of the pleasures of getting out of our cars.

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