Greencup Books is Closing Its Doors

After a few years of trying to find its place in the Birmingham scene, independent bookstore and publishing house Greencup Books has announced it’s going-out-of-business after the November 2nd, el Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) festival. The shop has been struggling over the past few months, having never really regained its footing after founder and publisher Russell Helms sold it. Greencup had plenty of great titiles and was fun to browse, though they often crammed the store with music acts and theatrical performances, upstairs and between the stacks.

The official announcement came this weekend, via the Greencup Books Facebook Fan Page:

well… its been a good run… the question was never if we were going to last.. but how long…ideally, it would have been longer.. but between the economy, the new construction across the street that took our parking, and their workers that take up all available parking 5 days a week… we are done for…we are broke and I can’t do it anymore, I am tired of begging you and the city for breaks… non-profit or not, this city is not really interested in small business, not enough revenue for them… ..Don’t really feel like getting all mopey I will just say I am closing our doors after day of the dead….

thanks for making this possible

This economy is tough on everyone and regardless of how things hit or missed at Greencup Books, it’s a shame to loose a true business experiment here in Birmingham.

7 thoughts on “Greencup Books is Closing Its Doors”

  1. Yes, the economy is always a tough hand to beat.

    But it never helps a business to be manned by hipster types who’d rather sit and visit with one another than to generate revenue or create future repeat customers by being personable and helpful to potential patrons. I was told on my absolutely final visit (while looking for any works by about four different authors) that “we’re not Barnes & Noble.” Good point, and now B&N has my business.

    This business’s demise was well-earned.

  2. Apparently this is everyone else’ fault besides the owners and employees who are “total victims” here. Frankly I’m not surprised. The place was filled with stuff that didn’t sell after two or three tries in a crappy yard sale. The staff was lazy and clearly had no idea what was on their shelves and you could tell that there was no thoughtfulness applied in choosing what should be placed on the shelves and why someone might think certain things were interesting. I stumbled on a gem and had the good fortune of finding a 100 year old Bible for $4 but the place is filled with crap, as if book-shaped things filling the shelves was all the effort they wished to put out before making sure the employee fridge was stocked with beer. It was great listening to the poetry reading and the other free stuff but I could NOT see how it was possible for them to remain open.

  3. Although it’s sad to see a fun-to-browse bookstore go, I must say I agree with William. I always felt like I was unwanted judging the actions/mannerisms of the volunteers and owner. They were rude, unknowledgeable and obviously had no interest in my repeated patronage. Because of this, I now go to Reed Books.

    You reap what you sow.

  4. This is aweful! I just visited this store for the firs time a few weeks back and I absolutely loved it! I walked out with more books than I could carry!

  5. Greencup was a great place to get odd and hard-to-find titles (for ridiculously cheap prices I might add), and it always had potential as a place where amazing things “might” happen… but unfortunately it just faded away in the end. It wasn’t for everyone — volunteers aren’t going to do much beyond ringing up your purchase, unless you just want to have a conversation — but for people who enjoyed having a “no-rules” space where art, music, and reading meet, it will definitely be missed.

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