JACKSON, Mich. (WLNS) — For nearly a decade, Mark and Nancy Oakley have owned Book Cottage.
It was an important part of their lives that caught them off guard.
“It became his own creation. You know, we thought we were opening a bookstore,” said Nancy Oakley. “We had no idea we were opening up a meet and greet space for so many people.”
People like Danielle Allor-Taylor and her daughter Lyla can attest to the Book Cottage’s impact.
“It’s not like any other bookstore you go to, it’s really different,” said 6th grader Lyla Brodock.
They say that there is some magic in the bookstore that you don’t see very often anymore.
“Book Cottage is always a place to go and have fun, and I don’t feel like many places bring as much joy as Book Cottage does,” Allor-Taylor said.
But like many other small businesses, the pandemic brought a challenge Oakley hadn’t anticipated.
They have until the first of January to pay back the thousands they owe or the store will be forced to close. Laila says it can’t be.
“I feel like if it closes for good, the magic will be gone,” Brodock said.
The entire Book Cottage community now unites advertising campaigns and a Go-Fund-Me.
“We hope for a Christmas miracle. We hope they can stay in business you know even just a little bit longer to continue to bring value to the community,” said frequent shopper Christine McIntyre.
The couple said the support for Oakley has been overwhelming.
“You know you matter to some people because people tell you,” Oakley said. “But I didn’t know we made such a difference to so many people. It was incredibly touching and humbling.”
They sold hundreds of books in the last two days.
They say they don’t know how this story will end, but they will always remember the support.
“They are family. Everyone is family, Nancy Oakley said.