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Owner Of The Oldest LGBT Bookstore In The Country Provides An Update On The Store’s Future

(credit: Thinkstock)

(credit: Thinkstock)

Tim Jimenez Tim Jimenez
Tim Jimenez is a general assignment reporter at KYW Newsradio...
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By Tim Jimenez

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The longtime owner of the oldest, continuously operating LGBT bookstore in the country has been planning on selling the Philadelphia shop. Recently, during a celebration of the store’s 40th anniversary, he gave an update on the store’s future.

Ed Hermance has owned Giovanni’s Room for the past 37 years. Back in September, he said he wanted to retire and sell the iconic store at 12th and Pine in order to keep it alive.

Now, Hermance says new potential owners may be waiting in the wings.

“The oldest of this group of people is 31-years-old. I’m 73 so it’s really, very encouraging to think that maybe these 20-somethings and 31-year-olds can actually make a go of this store.”

A place that’s meant a lot to so many during the evolution of the LGBT movement, one of the two original owners, Tom Wilson Weinberg is hopeful that, even in this age of Amazon, Giovanni’s Room can still make a positive impact.

“It’s a for-profit, or for-loss in this case, business. But the community feels ownership in it and I hope it continues.”

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