“Well the city as a whole has changed a lot - lost a lot of artists, dives, funkiness. SF has always attracted seekers, but those moving here the last 10-15 years were seeking something different from the previous newcomers, I think.”
Pete Mulvihill reminisces. A lot has changed since Pete MulhiVill and Kevin Ryan started working at Green Apple Books in the late 80s and early 90s. At the time, Richard Savoy owned Green Apple and eventually taught Pete and Kevin the ins and outs of a store he’d owned since 1967.
Since acquiring the store, Pete and Kevin have added two new locations in the city; Browser Books on Fillmore St in Pacific Heights and Green Apple Books on the Park on 9th in the Sunset. They’ve continued to channel Richard Savoy’s vision for the store through keeping a mix of old and new books and creating customer outreach with social media and websites. “Where Rich stayed within the walls of the store, we have reached outward a lot, learning from other bookstores, communicating with neighboring businesses and the Merchants Associations, building partnerships with other groups, like the JCC and Bay Area Book Festival, etc.” Pete explains.
I asked Pete and Kevin how they had been coping with the past few months and was delighted to hear that, although a difficult time, there has been a lot of support within the community towards Green Apple. “It's been a rollercoaster, but we've done our best to adapt. We've had incredible support from our community. Some schools and libraries moved their business to us. The SHOP LOCAL movement leapt forward when people saw shuttered storefronts and thought through what SF may look like if Amazon dominated everything.”
Check out this wonderful SF staple at their 3 different locations (Green Apple Books on the Park on 9th St in the Sunset, Green Apple Books on Clement st in the Richmond or Browser Books on Fillmore St in Pacific Heights) or online.