The words were whispered among the staff in the days leading up to Thursday. "Devo Night. Devo Night." The night when, just by telling us they were with Devotion School, customers could get ten percent off their entire purchases and have another ten percent donated to their PTO. School librarian and friend of the store Chris McDonnell would be here with a list of her recommendations. It would be intense, I was told. I pictured parents, driven by their mindfulness of Chris's wisdom, playing tug-of-war with the last copy of Drama.
And then people came, and then more people came, until they made the biggest Devo Night in Devo Night history. It was intense, and moving through the kids' section was darn near impossible even for the expert crowd-weavers we booksellers have become. I'm told that the distant adult sections and Card and Gift Room had their share of shoppers, too.
But intensity doesn't have to mean chaos. These customers, many of them regular customers, seemed to be in great moods as they shopped for books. Many were quite independent, and the questions I got came from both on and off the recommendations list. My fellow children's booksellers worked like elves, filling in holes as quickly as they appeared.
Next up: Lawrence School Day on December 1, 4-7 pm, with storytelling, songs, and an appearance from local children's performer Vanessa Trien. Gift wrapping will be offered from 9am to 8pm with a request for donations. A percentage of each sale will be donated to the Lawrence School.
There will be lots of people.
Bring. It. On.