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TELL US: Should Menlo Park's Barnes & Noble Stay Open?

Barnes & Noble announced they're going to be shutting unprofitable stores. Will the only bookstore close to Woodbridge be on that list?


In the age of Amazon and ebooks, it was bound to happen. Barnes & Noble's chief executive told the Wall Street Journal that the company will be closing at least 20 stores a year over the next ten years.

Until the last fiscal year, the company has been opening an average of 15 stores a year. Now they appear to be closing at least as many, according to a Huffington Post report. 

Since that WSJ story appeared, Barnes and Noble has been trying to explain what they really meant. The bookseller "is fully committed to the retail concept for the long term,” retail store CEO Mitchell Klipper was quoted in Publishers Weekly.

A B&N spokesman told Clark Patch that the Clark Barnes & Noble store - an important store in that township - reassured book buyers that they just signed a long term lease on that store until 2019.

But what of the B&N in Menlo Park Mall?

Since Borders closed its store in Woodbridge Center in 2011, the township of 100,000 people has had no book retailer in its boundaries. 

The Menlo Park store hasn't been singled out by B&N to stay open or to be shut. What do you think? 

Tell Us: Should the Barnes and Noble in Menlo Park stay open? Do you go there? Would you miss it? Should a bookstore open in Woodbridge Township?

Cheryl Cuthbertson February 18, 2013 at 01:22 PM
OMG!I was walking through Woodbridge Center the other day and remembering when we had 2 book stores there and saying thank goodness there is Barnes & Nobles still at Menlo Park!There is a lack Book Shops or any outlets whatsoever for people who read , browse and love books! Sa
ty February 18, 2013 at 01:41 PM
it should stay open, it is the best library around! i mean, how many libraries sell coffee and food?!
Bonnie February 18, 2013 at 02:34 PM
No wonder kids can't read! They aren't taught in school & they don't now the JOY of OWNING a book. E-readers are fine but there is something special about holing a book in your hand. I go to that Barnes & Noble all the time.
Jean February 18, 2013 at 02:55 PM
No! Please do not close B&N in Menlo. Where will we be able to go for a family outing? My daughter has always begged to go to B&N since she was little. Now that she is in high school, she can go by herself. This store costs me a lot of money, but what better way to spend your money? There is no other booksore in this area and the Menlo Park store is always crowded.
maryann spager February 18, 2013 at 03:08 PM
No!! Do not close!! Stay open!! So 1984 has arrived for sure with all the surveillance cameras, but now, instead of book burnings, we just close the book stores.
Ted Martin February 18, 2013 at 03:45 PM
While I agree it should remain open for all the previous stated reasons, and then some; there are at least 2 fine bookstores nearby. One on Inman Ave. in Colonia and one on Main St. in Metuchen, both very different but with selections to please anybody.
Alan Karp February 18, 2013 at 05:08 PM
I would like them to stay open if possible. I was down in Princeton a few weeks ago and they're building a brand new store at the Market Fair on Route 1. They already have one there.
gam February 18, 2013 at 05:33 PM
Perhaps they could stay open if people purchased books instead of using the store as a library and/or family outing?? They probably have days when Starbucks brings in more money then they do!
Jean February 18, 2013 at 06:10 PM
While we use B&N as a family outing, we NEVER visit Starbucks and ALWAYS leave the store with several books! We definitely contribute to their profits, not their overhead! I do, however, see what you mean. People just sit there and read their inventory and never purchase a thing other than a tall latte!
Deborah Bell (Editor) February 18, 2013 at 07:05 PM
Maybe that's cause people in Princeton read books. Woodbridge has a population of almost 100K. Surely that's enough to support a B&N (IF Woodbridge residents were book lovers!)
njangel163@yahoo.com February 18, 2013 at 07:15 PM
I HOPE BARNES & NOBLE STAY OPEN IN MENLO PARK. I ALWAYS GO THERE TO BROWSE THEN I BUY A FEW BOOKS EACH TIME I GO THERE. I DON'T LIKE BUYING BOOKS ONLINE. PLEASE KEEP BARNES AND NOBLE
grace farese February 18, 2013 at 10:33 PM
PLEASE DON'T CLOSE AND TAKE ACTUAL BOOKS AWAY FROM OUR KIDS. STAY AND LET THEM KNOW THE FEEL OF THE BOOKS AND THE ADVENTURES A BOOK CAN BRING.
mrszzano February 19, 2013 at 12:28 AM
Although I own and use an e-reader, not all books are available in electronic form. I patronize the Menlo Park Barnes & Noble, and appreciate having a large bookstore nearby. Please, B&N, don't close it.
mrszzano February 19, 2013 at 12:31 AM
Excuse me, Bonnie, but children ARE taught to read in school. If they can't read, maybe it's because they weren't paying attention, or a love for reading hasn't been nurtured in them at home. I noticed a few spelling errors in your post...does that mean you weren't taught to spell?
Amy February 19, 2013 at 01:34 AM
No!!!!! I love this Barnes & Noble! Please don't close it, then where would I go to get books? :( I literally just spend 100 bucks there this weekend to stock up and I'm thinking of getting a job there too!
gam February 19, 2013 at 03:57 AM
I personally go to the B&N in Clark if I am only interested in going to the bookstore-I don't like competing with parking for the Cheesecake Factory, Nordstroms and everything else located there. From where I live it is probably closer. Oh I also still take books out of the library!
Loretta Cronin February 19, 2013 at 03:06 PM
I love that store. Keep it open. They always have a large amount of people shopping there. My grandchildren love that store as well.
Vilma Novak February 19, 2013 at 08:40 PM
Its my favorite local store. Please don't close
Allison Ory February 22, 2013 at 01:18 AM
If we don't want Barnes and Noble to close we need to start supporting the stores by actually buying products from them. So many people just use Barnes and Noble as a showroom to discover and check out products then go and buy them online on Amazon or ebay for a lesser amount. Yes I know we are all looking to save a buck but we can't forget that we alone determine what the future of retail holds. We obviously have to expect to pay more when going into any retail store. Retail stores have to pay rent, utilities, insurance, cost of damage and theft, salaries to employees. Amazon cuts out so many of these costs of course they can offer you an extraordinary savings. What they do not offer is the experience. You do not get to see and hold the product and know sight on scene that it is flawless. You can walk out of that store right there, right then fully assured your selected product is perfect, not a knock off, and exactly what you intended. You have to pay a premium for that. We should be happy to pay that premium, happy for the experience, happy to have a place to mill about and discover- and let's not forget the perk of instant gratification. I have so many fond memories growing up of milling about the video stores with friends or family. It was a Friday night light, a trip to the video store and a night of scary movies. Video stores are virtually extinct now with the changing face of the digital age.
Allison Ory February 22, 2013 at 01:18 AM
Books are a tangible thing. A trophy on a shelf. An indicator of culture or education. The book is too brilliant of an invention to ever go away= the turning of pages- the presence of the book itself. This cannot be replaced with a digital format. Supplemented maybe, but never, ever replaced. If we want to keep our book stores- which we do- then we need to support Barnes and Noble. There is a culture of book lovers out there that is vast and wide and oh so strong. It's up to us. I say we save them. We alone create the world we live in it. I want to live in a world with book stores- not some mega monster giant like Amazon that is swallowing the retail industry as we know it whole.
Deborah Bell (Editor) February 22, 2013 at 01:00 PM
Allison, you said that SO well! I couldn't add a thing!

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