Arts and Culture, Astoria, Bookstores, Featured, Literary, Neighborhood, Shopping, Small Business Owners Spotlight
Nov 04, 2015

Astoria Small Business Owner Spotlight: Lexi Beach & Connie Rourke of Astoria Bookshop

  This Saturday, Astoria Bookshop and Astoria Coffee team up to present the fifth edition of their now-famous neighborhood business mash-up event: The Drunk Vocab Bee. What better time to (…)

Share this Scoop

total shares!

Astoria-Bookshop-Independent-Bookstore-Day-Astoria-Queens-small-business-broadway-30th-ave

 

This Saturday, Astoria Bookshop and Astoria Coffee team up to present the fifth edition of their now-famous neighborhood business mash-up event: The Drunk Vocab Bee. What better time to highlight the incredible owners of our beloved Astoria Bookshop in our Astoria Small Business Owner Spotlight?

Astoria Bookshop is the type of place where you immediately feel at home: the staff is welcoming but not intrusive, and the carefully curated selection of books is a joy to spend an afternoon perusing. We know how busy these superstar women are, so many thanks to Lexi and Connie for letting us feature them!

 

Spot:

The Astoria Bookshop

 

Owned by:

Lexi Beach & Connie Rourke

 

Year opened:

2013

 

Address:

31-29 31st Street

 

Known for:

Offering a well curated selection of books for all ages and a busy schedule of interesting events.

 

drunk-vocab-bee-astoria-bookshop-small-business-owners-profile-we-heart-astoria-queens-support-local

The judges deliberate at Drunk Vocab Bee 4. Photo Courtesy of Astoria Bookshop’s Instagram page

 

What made you decide to open a store front in Astoria?

I kept hearing from friends and book publishing colleagues that the neighborhood needed a bookstore. I figured I’d better fill the hole in the market before someone beat me to it.

 

What’s been your favorite moment since opening so far?

Hosting a reading with Roxane Gay this past May. She’s one of my favorite writers and such a wonderful speaker. It was an honor to introduce her to a standing room crowd that night. (WHA Note: I attended this event, and it was one of the most inspiring nights I’ve experienced in Queens!)

 

What’s your favorite item you sell?

My favorite book is The Princess Bride by William Goldman. Everyone who buys it gets a little gushing speech from me about how much better it is than the movie.

 

typewriter-astoria-bookshop-small-business-owners-series-we-heart-astoria-support-local

The famous typewriter! Photo Courtesy of Astoria Bookshop’s Instagram Page

What’s your favorite place to grab food when you’re working?

I can be found quite often waiting in line at both the King of Falafel truck & the Souvlaki King truck. I’d be hard pressed to pick a favorite between them.

 

Hidden Astoria secret you feel like people don’t know about that you live by?

I only just discovered the amazing sandwich menu at Astoria Bier & Cheese, which is hopefully not a secret to anyone else, because now I don’t know how I lived without it.

 

Favorite place to grab a drink?

Mar’s has my (current) favorite cocktail, a gin-liquor 43 combo that is all I need in this world.

 

If you have friends or family visiting Astoria, where do you take them?

 

When Aloria Cakes and Astoria Bookshop team up, the results are beautiful. (And delicious!) Photo Courtesy of Astoria Bookshop's Instagram page

When Aloria Cakes and Astoria Bookshop team up, the results are beautiful. (And delicious!) Photo Courtesy of Astoria Bookshop’s Instagram page

How have you seen Astoria change since you’ve been here?

The happiest change to me is how many excellent coffee shops have opened up in the last 2 years.

 

What’s your favorite part of owning a business in Queens?

A tie for my favorite:
The community of book lovers in Astoria is really exceptional. We have such awesome, smart customers who are incredibly supportive both of the Bookshop & of the local literary culture.
Just as incredible is the network of local small business owners. Some I’ve met as a customer, or as customers of mine; others I know through our annual Find Waldo Local scavenger hunt, or through mutual friends. There is obviously a great entrepreneurial spirit in Astoria and it’s wonderful to be a part of it.

 

And we’re lucky to have you, Astoria Bookshop!

 

Astoria Bookshop (31-29 31st St)
astoriabookshop.com | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

 

About Lindsay Goyette

Lindsay has been eating and drinking her way through Queens since 2011. A casting director by day and Astoria explorer by night, you can usually find her checking out live music, theatre, or the newest neighborhood spot to enjoy a craft beer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *