Ivy’s Bookshop owner Megan Scott says things like the ‘staff picks’ are what set a traditional book store apart from online options these days.

Ivy’s Bookshop owner Megan Scott says things like the ‘staff picks’ are what set a traditional book store apart from online options these days.

Ivy’s hosts page-turner of a party

Community contributes heavily to the longevity of the village shop

A selection of staff picks line a shelf across from the sales counter at Ivy’s Bookshop.

These staff selections, customer service, knowledgeable staff and community involvement, are among the reasons owner Megan Scott maintains there will always be a place in people’s hearts for bookstores.

“It’s the fact the neighbourhood knows us,” she says. “We’re a hub. We get people in here daily whether it’s to buy a newspaper or just check in.”

Scott, who prefers to read British murder mysteries and contemporary British fiction, has been in the book business since 1986, building on a background as a writer, publicist and book representative before buying Ivy’s in 2001. This weekend, the shop celebrates 50 years of page-turning sales with a party on Saturday.

“It really speaks to the community that they’ve supported us that long,” Scott said. “There are not many bookstores that make 50 years. There’s Munro’s and we always consider Ivy’s as Munro’s little sister.”

Community contributes heavily to the longevity of the village shop.

“The fact that we’ve been a part of it for so long. We’ve got grandchildren coming in,” Scott said.

Just last week long-time staffer Shirley St. Pierre said a man visiting from Alberta, who’d come in with his mother as a child, brought his kids to see the village bookstore.

“I love it when the kids come in. … They know where the kids’ section is and make a beeline,” said St. Pierre, who has worked at Ivy’s since 1981. She first worked for original owner Ivy Mickelson who opened the store May 28, 1964.

“She was a real character. Smart and astute,” St. Pierre said. “There’s nobody like Ivy. She was a little bit eccentric and warm and generous. Customers loved her. She was a real bookseller and truly supported authors.”

Three owners later some things haven’t changed, customer service is key.

“I think books are a slightly different commodity,” Scott said. “A lot of people don’t want to go online. They would rather have that personal interaction.”

Scott takes her regular customers into consideration when ordering new stock and calls the women who work for her “truly amazing.”

“The people I work with and the customers,” St. Pierre agrees, are the top perk of the job. “It comes down to people.”

And people, she feels, will always be ready to buy books.

“(Books) have some soul. That’s totally lacking in an electronic device,” she added. “The product, if you call it that, is always interesting, always new and you never know who’s going to walk in the door. There’s always something new.”

 

Visit Ivy’s Bookshop as it celebrates 50 years with a party Saturday that includes prize draws, and special sales from 1 to 4 p.m. at the 2188 Oak Bay Ave. store. “It’s a birthday party so you have to have cake,” Scott added with a smile.

 

 

Just Posted

An SUV sits where it crashed through the front window of the 2:18 Run store in Fairfield Plaza, after the driver appeared to lose control on Monday afternoon. (Photo by Phil Nicholls)
Driver crashes through front window of Victoria running store in Fairfield

Phil Nicholls of 2:18 Run said crash sounded like an earthquake at first

Processed sewage is still being deposited at the Hartland landfill rather than sent as biosolids to a Richmond cement plant. (Black Press Media file photo)
Biosolids at Hartland still being placed on landfill in Saanich

Richmond cement plant up and running, but CRD end product not suitable for purpose

Seismic upgrading and expansion work at Victoria High School is about a year behind due to pandemic-related factors, the Greater Victoria School District announced. (Photo by Cole Descoteau)
Victoria High School seismic work, expansion a year behind schedule

Greater Victoria School District now targeting September 2023 for reopening of historic school

Elk Lake Drive area resident Michael Blayney protests a proposed multi-building development for his Royal Oak neighbourhood, outside Saanich municipal hall on Monday (June 14). (Photo by Megan Atkins-Baker/News Staff)
Demonstrators protest 11-storey development on Elk Lake Drive in Saanich

Saanich locals gather at municipal hall to protest development, public hearing goes Tuesday

The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority is calling on Transport Canada to rescind its ban to Feb. 28, 2022 on cruise ship stops in Canada, to allow planning to begin in advance of a reopening of the cruise industry next year.
Greater Victoria Harbour Authority seeks end to federal ban on cruise ship stops in Canada

Greater Victoria Harbour Authority CEO hopes cruises will resume by 2022

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Neighbours fight a small late-night bush fire with garden hoses and shovels in Cinnabar Valley on June 5. They couldn’t get help from local fire services because the fire was located in an area under B.C. Wildfire Services jurisdiction. (Photo courtesy Muriel Wells)
Neighbours on edge of Nanaimo city limits left to put out bush fire themselves

Cinnabar Valley residents tackle fire with hoses and buckets for two and a half hours

Darren Campbell’s truck (pictured) was stolen when he stopped to check on a car in a ditch on Cowichan Bay Road on Monday morning. (Facebook photo)
Vancouver Island Good Samaritan’s truck stolen in nasty trick

‘Try to be a Good Samaritan and my $20,000 truck gets stolen right under my nose’

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

Creative handmade signs abound at the June 13 Tofino rally for old growth trees. (Nora O’Malley photo)
VIDEO: Tofino stands in solidarity for Fairy Creek Blockades

Over 150 supporters attend rally hosted by Friends of Clayoquot Sound

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

Most Read