Philly gay bookstore, country's oldest, needs help


PHILADELPHIA (AP) -

The oldest independent gay bookstore in the country says it needs help to ensure its survival.

Giovanni's Room in downtown Philadelphia must have one of its brick walls taken down and rebuilt from the ground up. Store owner Ed Hermance says the wall is structurally unsound and the job will cost $50,000.

The 36-year-old book shop is looking for volunteers and organizers to help with author events and community activities to raise funds.

Hermance says the store will be open during the construction and needs its customers' continued patronage to stay alive.

Giovanni's Room became the oldest gay independent bookstore in the U.S. after New York City's 41-year-old Oscar Wilde Bookshop closed in March, citing the bad economy. http://www.giovannisroom.com

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