Lucky Dog Books struggled at 633 W. Davis St. for three years. But just as they were closing up shop to make way for a new tenant, the customers showed how much they cared. It was enough to convince the owners to reopen at another location in Oak Cliff. After announcing the move on Facebook, Lucky Dog Books saw a substantial increase in sales in its final weeks. Not only that, but customers actually donated their time to help move 3,000 boxes full of books.
When word got out that the store was closing, people started showing up. Lucky Dog’s best month on Davis was its last. And remarkably, people kept showing up even after the store closed. “A lot of people pitched in to help box things up,” says John Tilton, who owns the store with his wife, Marquetta. The couple offered volunteers bookmarks that were five-dollar gift certificates, but many refused to take them.
Tilton says he initially asked people to convince the landlord that Lucky Dog Books should stay put, but they ultimately ended up convincing him and his wife to stay in the neighborhood. Early in April, Lucky Dog Books relocated to 911 W. Jefferson and opened its doors in a makeshift state a couple weeks later. “We had this period where the entire place was just stacks of books and piles of shelves,” says Tilton. They sorted books, put shelves back together, and started putting up sections. Completing the store took much longer than expected, but customers were welcome to buy whatever was on the shelves in the process.
The new location has been complete for a couple weeks now. In addition to a huge assortment of books, there are CDs, cassettes, vinyl records, DVDs, VHS and Beta—all sorts of older and new media. “Sometimes I think we are the dead media capitol of east Dallas,” Tilton chuckles. But as these old formats resurrect, they become zombie media. Everything on the shelves was bought or traded from customers.
Lucky Dog Books will celebrate its grand opening for three days starting this afternoon, when young writers will share their work starting at 2:45 p.m. Tonight at 8 p.m., Opalina Salas will launch Poetry Reading with Poets on X+, a poetry series that will take place on the second Friday of each month with a featured poet followed by an open mic. On Saturday morning, there are free massages from 10:30 to 12:30, with tipping encouraged. From there, several local authors will read from their books and answer questions. There will even be several musicians performing Saturday evening. On Sunday, there will be events focused on writing for and by teens, as well as storytelling for children.
For more info, visit luckydogbooks.com.