New York City bookstore turns to crowd sourcing to stay open

NEW YORK (WABC) -- During this Halloween season at one New York City bookstore, the trick is to find more money. The treat could be keeping its doors open.

With four branches around the city -- three in Manhattan and one in Long Island City -- Book Culture has found itself on financially hard times, claiming that online giant Amazon has badly damaged the business, which has been around since the late 90s.

Owner Chris Doeblin turned to local and state governments for help, but there wasn't much that could be done.

So instead, he turned to everyday New Yorkers, loyal customers of the store eager to save the independent, family-owned chain.

They certainly did not disappoint, already raising just about $500,000 of the $750,000 needed to keep book culture afloat, especially with the busy holiday shopping season around the corner.

About 75 individual donors have already stepped forward, but the business would like to raise another $100,000 by November 5.

Most of the money raised so far is loans, meaning money donors could lose altogether if the store is forced to close up shop.

This is just one example of yet another local shop fighting to stay alive in a world where people, in this digital age, would rather click than walk into a store.

* More New York City news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
* Follow us on YouTube
Copyright © 2021 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.