I have a secret (well, not so secret anymore) life goal: Be Kathleen Kelly. You know, the spunky, book-loving woman with “flawless taste” from the classic ‘90s film “You’ve Got Mail.” More specifically, I want to own a magical children’s bookstore like her Shop Around The Corner. Maybe someday. In the meantime, however, Denver has plenty of magical bookstores that are fantastic spots to take kids. Here are some of my favorites:
The Tattered Cover – No list about Denver bookstores would be complete without mentioning the iconic Tattered Cover. Touted as one of the best bookstores in the nation, The Tattered Cover has four locations in the Metro Area – the LoDo location, a small outpost in Union Station, on Colfax, and in Aspen Grove in Littleton. Some of the best features of the Tattered Cover include:
- Their buy-back program – If you have good quality used books (including children’s books), you can take them into the Tattered Cover and they will buy your books from you. A bookseller inspects them and then gives you credit to use in their store for what they decide to keep. They also offer to donate the books they do not want from you.
- Storytimes – The store holds free children’s storytimes at Colfax on Tuesdays at 10:30am and at Aspen Grove on Tuesdays and Saturdays at 10:30am.
- Family Friday Nights – On the last Friday of the month, at 6pm, the Colfax and Aspen Grove stores invite kids and their families to come dressed in their jammies while they listen to stories, do an activity/craft, and have a snack provided by Whole Foods. We haven’t done this yet, but it’s on our must-do list for January.
The Bookies – A local bookstore near Colorado Blvd and Mississippi that specializes in children’s books, the Bookies is a must-see. You and your crew could spend hours perusing their aisles. The staff knows their stuff, and they are SUPER helpful. This bookstore makes me so happy. Some unique aspects of this store include:
- Storytime on Tuesdays at 10:30am.
- Fabulous recommendations – The Bookies prides themselves on being experts on books, so take advantage of them! I found this awesome resource on their website about great book series for kids of all ages.
- School and teacher resources – If you’re a teacher or a homeschooling mama, The Bookies has fabulous educational resources for kids of all ages. Per their website, “We stock what may be the largest selection of teacher resources in Denver. We value children’s education. Our materials span a variety of educational disciplines, and cover areas including social and developmental needs. Our staff includes former teachers and we’re dedicated to keeping current with educational trends…”
BookBar – A combination bookstore and wine bar, this bookstore on Tennyson Street in Denver is truly unique. They say, “The idea of combining a book store and wine bar came to owner, Nicole Sullivan, like a bolt of lightning one day while reading a book and drinking a glass of wine. Who among us does not like wine and books and books with wine?” All I can say to that is a hearty, “Amen!” Though a bookstore/wine bar may not seem like it would be very kid friendly, it definitely is. They have newly expanded children’s and young adult room, and many neat features to enjoy with (or without) your kids.The DMMB team had their first meeting there, and we all love it! Among the our favorite features are:
- Happier Hour – Tuesday and Thursday from 4-5. Storytimes are great and all, but hearing that BookBar steps up the game and does storytimes with wine. 1/2 off wine from the wine bar for mama, and stories and cookies for kids? Sign me up!
- Bookgirl – A mother/daughter book club. How sweet is this? See their website for more details.
- Bookworm- If you have an 8-18 year old book lover, they can sign up to be a book reviewer and get sneak peeks at new books.
I was so impressed with all the quality programs these local bookstores have for your kids. As we head into the New Year and the winter months after the holidays, I know I need more indoor ideas to keep my little ones busy. Be sure to check these awesome bookstore programs out and tell us how it goes.