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Featuring WADA Business Member: Alsace Walentine, Tombolo Books

16 Jul 2020 11:05 AM | Teresa Sullivan (Administrator)

Alsace moved to St. Petersburg from Asheville, NC where she had managed a bookstore for 16 years.  In St. Pete, she was in search of a contemporary bookstore which also brought in authors from out of state to give lectures about their work. 

There was a need for a bookstore involved with the community.  The year was 2015 and she spent the next two years researching, taking courses at the Green House, and producing a business plan.  In 2017 she became an LLC.  She had a pop-up shop in the Edge District for 5 months, facilitating book clubs, and partnering with local non-profits to sell books for them as well as events and book signings.  The little 100 square foot shop helped to get her name and business on the local literary map. The shop performed special ordering along with delivery service all over the country. 

 She began to save money and locate investors to aid in opening a real brick and mortar store.  The young entrepreneur was finally able to locate a physical store at 2153 1st. Ave S., right here in the Warehouse Arts District. 

 Alsace came from a family of painters and her father is a woodworker.  Her interest falls heavily into the literary arts.  Words as an art form that cover everything from details, font, thought, artistic covers, to the incredible way words and stories are formed out of the imagination.  She says WADA has always been supportive and her physical store location is practically right at the entrance of the district off 22nd St. S.  But, she states, she would have been a member even if physically she wasn’t near the district. 

 Her family and wife worked on coming up with a name for the store.  It needed to be a name unique to the locale.  Tombolo is defined as a type of sandbar that connects an island to the mainland.  And lastly she added, “Books help people connected to other people.  People connected with great literary minds.”  And thus, Tombolo Books was born.

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