New Owners for Between the Covers, Telluride, Colo.
Daiva Chesonis and Bobbi T. Smith, co-owners of Between the Covers Bookstore in Telluride, Colo., have sold the 47-year-old bookstore to Jennifer and Brad Ball, the Telluride News reported. The couple also purchased High Alpine Coffee, the espresso bar located in Between the Covers, from Roxann Vistocci.
Smith and Chesonis, who have owned the store since 2010, handed over the keys on November 10. The Balls have already made some changes to the bookstore, including expanding the children's and classics sections and adding some new sidelines and gift items like scratch-off maps, candles and wool puppets. The store's coffee shop will soon have new insulated mugs with designs created by one of the baristas at Between the Covers.
They've also jumped right into hosting events. Local authors Susan Kees, Jill Wilson and Ryan Bonneau will be in-store this Wednesday to sign their books, and the Balls plan to host more author events and game nights going forward.
"Our whole family--five children and one son-in-law--are all book lovers," said Jennifer Ball, who had previous careers as a teacher and elementary school librarian. She told Telluride News that she has a passion for children's books and art and design books, while Brad Ball prefers classic literature and books about world history.
The couple began to visit Telluride after their twin sons moved to the area a few years ago. They were enamored, and thought "what better way to jump into the fabric of Telluride than through the bookstore," Ball remarked. "We combined our love of [the] outdoors with our love of books and with two of our children nearby and in a place where our other children will want to come visit, we feel so lucky."
Both are aware of how important Between the Covers is for the community, and they want to ensure that continues. "We see the bookstore-coffee shop as part of the soul of the community."
Looking back at her time running the store with Chesonis, Smith remarked that Between the Covers served as a "de facto visitors center" for Telluride. "Tourists and locals drop in to browse, grab a cup of coffee, ask for directions, and meet each other in a safe space. Everyone can leave with a book in hand without spending a bundle."
Chesonis said she was "so dang proud" of the job she and Smith did, and how they kept the legacy of store founder Edi Katz and the other previous owners alive. She added that her favorite overall memory was customers "appreciating the simplicity of a book, within which was a complex and rich history or a mere fantastical escape."
Chesonis and Smith are "each eyeing a calmer future post-sale," the Telluride News wrote.