Back to the future: King's shows off new version of old standalone book store – Yahoo News

Sep. 24—WILKES-BARRE — King's College grad Eddie Day Pashinski, never one bereft of things to say, beamed when he walked into the school's Scandlon gym and saw College President the Rev. Thomas Looney.
"What's with all the rain?" Pashinski, D-Wilkes-Barre, asked Looney, who had moved a ceremony showing off the new college bookstore into the gym due to the nearly daylong downpour.
"It's holy water," Looney said without missing a beat. Pashinski liked the quip so much he finished his remarks with the joke during the roughly 30-minute event Thursday afternoon.
The drenching may have driven everyone into the gym, where the small crowd gathered on a large landing on the second floor, but it didn't diminish the distinctive nature of it all. King's of course, once had its own bookstore on campus, shut down when the institution agreed to merged operations with Wilkes University across Public Square, both setting up shop under the umbrella of Barnes & Noble. That collaboration lasted 15 years before the two schools announced earlier this year they would be parting ways, returning to separate stores on their own turf.
For King's the new location is the former S&W Restaurant across the street from the gym. During his comments near the end of the ceremony, Looney called the building part of the school's "heritage" because many students and staff had met and dined at the restaurant for years.
As he has done multiple times when King's formally announced a completed renovation of older property in downtown Wilkes-Barre — a church, a water company building, run down apartments to name a few — Vice President for Institutional Advancement Fred Pettit offered opening remarks, listing the other renovation projects but acknowledging this was different "because we're admiring it from a distance," pointing to the window behind him.
Wilkes-Barre Mayor George Brown, a King's alum with a granddaughter now in her sophomore year, quipped that Petit always seemed to have a new suit for such occasions, then praised the work King's has done in helping update and renovate the downtown, saving old buildings and putting them to new use.
State Sen. John Yudichak, I-Swoyersville, told an old joke about the late Monsignor Andrew McGowan, famous for frequently serving as toastmaster at public events, who once responded to complaints about rain by replying "Listen, I'm in sales, not management." Yudichak lauded King's "unwavering support of Wilkes-Barre revitalization efforts."
Pashinski said King's and Wilkes University have created numerous new programs in renovated or new buildings "to the point it improves the outside image of Wilkes-Barre.
Looney gave brief remarks, including announcing the official name of the store: "Monarch Outfitter and Books." He then turned to face the window overlooking the building across the street and offered a blessing before the crowd headed over to check it out.
Renovations cost about $600,000, and that does not include the purchase of the building, but it changes the long-term economics because King's is no longer renting space for their book store, as was the case in the Barnes & Noble deal.
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