Minding Your Business - Where the Sidewalk Ends Bookstore and Children's Annex

February 08, 2024
Connie LaMotte and Meghan O’Brien fireside at the bookstore Connie LaMotte and Meghan O’Brien fireside at the bookstore

Where the Sidewalk Ends

Bookstore and Children’s Annex

Books - Gifts - Coffee

432 Main St.




Open Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Closed Tuesday and Wednesday

“Our word of the year is ‘community,’” said Caitlin Doggart-Bernal. Doggart-Bernal owns Where the Sidewalk Ends Bookstore with her mother, Joanne Doggart. “We have had some fun brainstorming for events centered on that theme. We strive to create a community for little ones and their parents to meet other children and parents while doing something fun.” Actually, the two created a community when they first opened this store nearly two decades ago. “It will be 19 years this Memorial Day,” said Doggart-Bernal. The “welcoming two-story antique barn” filled with books — best sellers and local favorites, along with book-centered events — is a hub of activity all year long, but with their fireside seating and hot drinks to sip, it’s an especially wonderful stop this time of year.

“Thank goodness for our managers Meghan O’Brien and Connie LaMotte; they come up with the best creative ideas. We are wrapping up the MLK Book Drive for Nauset elementary schoolers, and the ‘Truth About Horses’ donation promo (Christy Cashman’s book) which was part of our Toy Drive for the Cape Cod Toy Library, both of which ran through the end of January. We are excited about the Winter Story Times (every other Monday morning at 10:30 a.m. all winter) which includes an activity. And we just got ‘pour-over lattes’ for the parents to try, a locally owned company with eco-friendly, paper filters to pour hot water over. They’re delicious!”

In the summer, their “Author Literary Luncheons” are legendary. “The luncheons started in 2008 and are held at the Wequassett Resort in a gorgeous setting overlooking Pleasant Bay.” Some of the authors featured at the luncheons over the years include Elin Hilderbrand, Ann Hood, Jennifer Weiner, Joan Anderson, Linda Greenlaw, Jane Green, Nancy Thayer, Sue Miller, Lisa Genova, Spencer Quinn, Nathaniel Philbrick, Anne LeClaire, Sally Gunning and others. It’s easy to understand why these luncheons sell out quickly. “We’re in the sorting-out phase right now,” said Doggart-Bernal. “It’s a lot of back and forth with publishers planning summer national tours and coordinating our dates with theirs.” Sign up for their newsletter for updates on these.

Doggart-Bernal also clued me in on an event that hasn’t been announced yet. “Lidey Hueck (who works with Ina Garten!) has a cookbook coming out and will be doing an event on our covered deck the weekend of July Fourth. We are all excited to have this locked in!” Last summer they hosted a “Taylor Swift Lyric Appreciation Night” where young people listened to Swift’s music while making friendship bracelets on the deck. That deck also leads to the Annex. “When the business next door to us closed in 2010, it gave us an opportunity to expand, and create a space for the youngest of readers,” Doggart-Bernal said. In the Annex, you’ll find quality children’s books, educational toys and more, all in colorful displays. “Mom loves seeing the kids grow up who come in over the years. We say it’s a rite of passage to go from the annex and up the stairs in the main building to where we house the ‘chapter books.’”

Where the Sidewalk Ends is where a community begins!