Nestled in the tiny town of Stanwood is Snow Goose Books & Frame a 30-year-old shop, where owners and staff members offer knowledgeable and friendly service. They know their neighbors, as well as their neighbors’ interests in literature and taste in art for framing. “We really get to know our customers,” said Kristine Kaufman, co-owner of Snow Goose Books and Frames. “We have a personal way of relating with customers, which comes naturally through the business [of books and art] without being intrusive.” Snow Goose buys books based on personal knowledge of their friends, local customers, and tourists. Often people visit the store looking for their next page-turner, stay-up-late-for-the-next chapter, favorite read.
Snow Goose isn’t a fancy bookstore by any means. Kaufman would call her place an oldfashioned general bookstore. Though it may be a touch antiquated with its carpet floors and wooden snow geese that reside throughout the store, there’s a charm about it that fits right in with the rest of the street in Stanwood’s historic East End. Because of this relaxed, unpretentious vibe you’ll find casual, local conversations that freely flow. This is a place people come often to check in and hear the town buzz.
WHAT YOU’LL FIND
As co-owner Tom Bird puts it, Snow Goose sells books without batteries. You’ll find a wide selection for all ages and of all genres, which is no small feat for such a small store. Snow Goose carries several great local books and beautiful coffee table reads. They also carry gift items and during the holidays, stock up on local jewelry, handmade hats, ornaments and cards for Stanwood’s Holiday Walk on Black Friday, from 5-8 p.m. These items are on hand throughout the season.
Kaufman bought the bookstore 16 years ago and brought in her husband, Tom Bird. Now a co owner, Bird is a former cabinet maker who builds the frames for the frame shop they acquired a year ago, which incidentally has also been in town for 30 years. Jennie, the rescue cat, cannot be left out as a key person (or kitty, if you will), as she seems to rule the roost and follows customers about, finds cozy spots to rest, or plays contentedly nearby. She calls Snow Goose her forever home.
Kaufman says to pick a favorite would be like picking a favorite child. She just can’t do it, but she is highly keen on the author Paul Gallico, who wrote The Snow Goose. The bookstore is partly named for his work. Another novel, The Abandoned, stars a cat named Jennie. Of course this is where Jennie, the Snow Goose’s cat, gets her namesake. You’ll always find both books in stock at Snow Goose Books and Frames.
8716 271st St. NW, Stanwood | 360.629.3631 | www.snowgoosebookstore.com