As the only multilingual, general-interest bookshop and art space in Washington Heights, Word Up has been a locus of culture and creativity in the neighborhood since June 2011. Our new management company terminated our month-to-month lease agreement as of July 2, 2012. The lease, sponsored by Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance, had been a month-to-month agreement, giving either side allowance to terminate at any point with 30 days’ notice.
As readers of this site may already know, Word Up was originally slated as a 1-week-long pop-up project. Now officially a joint program of nonprofit organizations Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance (NoMAA) and Seven Stories Institute (SSI), we have garnered vibrant and continual community support to remain open for over a year.
During our recent birthday fund drive to accommodate a slight raise in rent, we raised $9,200 in 10 days, intended to help us into Year 2. THANK YOU for your support—not just financially, but in all the ways you have shown it all year. We plan to put those funds to good use and to make sure that a Year 2 (beyond our last day at 4157 Broadway) happens, in our neighborhood el Alto, Washington Heights.
Now that we have received a 30-day notice on our current home, the volunteer collective is working with NoMAA and SSI to explore moving options. The ideal space would be centrally located in Washington Heights with a lot of foot traffic, close to our current ~1000 square feet, would include a stage and storage space, and would be at a subsidized rental rate.
If you have ideas, suggestions, or direct links to such a space, we are anxious to hear from YOU. We would be happy to share with you more detailed, concrete information on our progress over the past year at that time, if needed.
Our needs are great, but not impossible to achieve, considering all else that has been accomplished in the past year as a community.
As our future becomes clearer, we will likely have a big ol’ meeting to discuss next steps. Look out for updates! To make sure you get the news, subscribe to our newsletter, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter (not just to sound like a broken record, but because the Fbookers and tweeters in the crew are usually much faster at dissemination of info than this here blog poster.) And most importantly, please visit the store when you can. We’ll try and keep the place stocked with the most updated information on paper and in person, and, most of all, you are why we have stuck around so long, so it’d be great to see you through such a strange time!
Please send any informative leads to info @ wordupbooks . com.