On Saturday, September 30, 2017 Here Be Books & Games in Oakbrook Plaza shopping center is closing the doors of its brick and mortar store. The owners, Tim and Tina McDuffie are now in the process of selling off their existing inventory and store fixtures. Until Saturday, September 30th all books are $1.00 each and the store will be open at normal hours.
During the first week of October the McDuffies will be packing up to move out but are offering a special opportunity for teachers and senior centers to come by and purchase a bag of books of their choice for only $5.00. Additionally, anyone wishing to send books to a military member serving overseas can also fill a box (provided at the store) with paperback books and the McDuffies will pay the shipping charges to any official APO or FPO address. If you are interested in either of these options please call ahead (843)695-1498 to set up a time and day for pick up.
A board game auction will also be held the evening of the store’s final day on September 30th. The online store will remain open for the foreseeable future and the McDuffies are exploring options for continuing the game night. Information about the closing and more details about available books and games can also be found on the website: https://herebebooksandgames.com.
The McDuffies’ popular book store has been a unique resource for books and board games in the Summerville community for 12 years, Here Be Books & Games is closing its doors. Much like the small bookstore depicted in the movie “The Shop Around the Corner” in which a large company forces a small business to close, Here Be Books & Games is unable to compete with pressure from out of town investors.
The small local business has gradually grown and prospered at its current location, 4650 Ladson Road, Suite 1. Unfortunately, an out of town investment company recently purchased the property and has informed existing businesses in Oakbrook Plaza that rents will quadruple, forcing the McDuffies to search for another location. Sadly, the increase in local property values has also made it difficult for small local business owners to find affordable facilities. Many leases at other area shopping centers now include rent, but also require renters to pay the owner’s property taxes, insurance and maintenance costs for the building and land. Small businesses like Here Be Books and Games are just unable to take on that kind of financial commitment. The search for a new location for their business has been very frustrating for the McDuffies, with two promising options falling through. In one case an owner wanted a much higher price than the actual appraisal value of the property.
The McDuffies have been valued members of the community. Since opening in 2005, they have not only provided affordable books for school kids from preschool through college, they have regularly sent boxes of books to military members serving overseas. The bookstore has offered an extensive collection of books, but has thrived in recent years by expanding the inventory to include a wide variety of innovative games for people of all ages. The store’s monthly game night became a popular gathering place for people of all ages to come and learn how to play unique board games not offered anywhere else in the area. As mentioned above, the McDuffies hope to be able to continue the game night but plans are tentative at this time. According to Tim, a retired Navy Veteran, they are “still hoping for a last minute miracle, but we are preparing for the worst”.
In a Facebook post, loyal customer David Jack, expressed the feelings of so many, “Terrible news for you and for the community. Charleston doesn’t have another store like it.” For more comments and additional details about the closing please visit the web site https://herebebooksandgames.com and/or call the store at (843) 695-1498 to make an appointment to pick up books for schools, senior centers or for members of the military serving overseas.