It’s now Halloween all year long at Gresham bookstore’s new location – OregonLive

Books Around the Corner takes on a year-round Halloween theme
Come November, the pumpkins, skull lights, life-size skeleton, animatronic Pennywise clown, taxidermied rat vampire and other Halloween decorations in Stephanie Csaszar’s bookstore are staying right where they are. That’ll be the case in December, too. And every other month.
Csazar, owner of Books Around the Corner at 1217 N.E. Burnside Road in Gresham, is going all in on her favorite holiday with a year-round Halloween theme as she settles her business into its new space.
The store will celebrate Halloween and its new location from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 30, with trick-or-treating, a costume contest, and a virtual pumpkin carving contest.
Csazar, a former librarian, launched Books Around the Corner three years ago as a general bookstore. “When I first opened, I opened for everyone else,” she said.
Then she decided to set the store apart a bit by shifting its focus to fantasy, horror, mystery and science fiction – her favorite genres. Sales went up.
When the opportunity to rent an 800-square-foot storefront on Burnside came up, Csazar pondered yet another pivot. “What makes me happy is Halloween and fall,” she thought. (As a child, she wanted to grow up to be a vampire.) An acquaintance asked why she would wait to celebrate what she loved, and a light bulb went on. Now, her books sit amid an unabashed display of anything and everything Halloween.
“This is the dream for me, seeing all this every day,” she said, Halloween-themed tattoos lining her arms, as she stood near an artificial Christmas tree decorated with Halloween ornaments, and bookcases filled with titles such as “The Big Book of Monsters,” “The Little Ghost Who Lost Her Boo!” and “Goodnight Goon: A Petrifying Parody.”
Within days of her Oct. 8 reopening, she got customers who had driven three hours from their Washington home for the Halloween bookstore experience. “They loved it,” she said. Other customers came in to pick up Halloween-themed pins, stickers, candles and teas.
Spooky tchotchkes sit on just about every shelf, from black spiders to a fake severed arm bearing Portland author Chuck Palahniuk’s name. Skelly the skeleton greets visitors to the fantasy room, while an animatronic Pennywise, the creepy clown from the “It” movies, looms near Csazar’s desk. For those not into being terrified, whimsical Halloween art from Little Spooky Studio, a Portland-based Etsy shop, is featured through the bookstore. And the bookstore cat, 6-month-old Spooky, is more friend than foe.
“I thought opening a bookshop would be a dream come true,” Csazar said, “but it was actually this Halloween-themed genre fiction bookshop that is the real dream come true.”
Books Around the Corner
Address: 1217 N.E. Burnside Road, Building A, Suite 101 (inside the Executive Center complex at Burnside and 212th Avenue)
Hours: 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday
Website: booksaroundthecorner.com
Email: info@booksaroundthecorner.com
COVID-19 protocols: Masks and proof of vaccination required
awang@oregonian.com; Twitter: @ORAmyW
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