Kepler’s bookstore re opened the doors to the store Tuesday night during a grand opening gala. While the event competed with the presidential debate and the state of the city address, it was the place to be for Menlo Park’s literati.
Dozens of people perused literature in the freshly renovated space, with cheese from Milk Pail Market, and beverages titled “Hell or High Watermelon” in hand. The changes to the store were immediately visible. Shelves have been moved to other areas of the store to create a more open feel.
The store also has a magazine rack along the rear of the store, with a billowy drape dangling from the ceiling. This cloth separates the main section of the store from the portion in which authors discuss their works during special events.
During any time of the day, Kepler’s customers can now find hand-written book recommendations underneath the featured books. Those come from people in local book clubs, Praveen Madan, community engagement officer for Kepler’s 2020.
The store had been closed all summer while staff and volunteers conceptualized a new strategy for the store, and revamped the interior. Kepler's is officially open for business once more.
A notable element of the new store is the "Digital Labs” area. The store is experimenting with new ways of interacting with stories, said Madan. While you can’t download the book to your mobile device from the station quite yet, you can purchase audio books on cd. You can then rip those to disk and transfer the files to your audio device of choice, he said. For people who want to bypass that process, the store now sells shuffles, pre loaded with audio books.
Kepler’s fans stayed late into the night, mingling amid the stacks of books until about 10 p.m. at night.