Avoid the Day Bookstore & Cafe began life as an itinerant pop-up about two years ago around the Rockaway peninsula in the New York City Borough of Queens. Last week, co-owners Jianna and Jason Heurer manifested their shared dream to open a bricks and mortar bookshop with a grand opening of the cozy bookshop/cafe in Rockaway Park. The shop promises to offer a curated selection of 3,000 or so titles and a welcoming hang-out space for locals and tourists alike.
Unless you are from the New York area, or are a surfer, you will be forgiven if you don’t know about “the Rockaways.” The peninsula has one of the longest urban beaches in the U.S. and has been a day-tripper attraction for New Yorkers for more than a century. More recently, the Rockways has become a destination for East Coast small wave surfers. My family’s roots go back to 1900 in nearby Brooklyn and at one point my parents owned a restaurant at the Rockaway beach boardwalk, but I haven’t spent much time there since childhood.
If you’re wondering about the name Avoid the Day Bookstore, it comes from an auto-corrected text that was supposed to say “have a good day.” I think that it’s a perfect name for a bookshop in a beach town. What booklover wouldn’t want to avoid the day and hang out with some good books and a cup of coffee just a block from the ocean.