'Cider Monday' catches on with indie booksellers

After the staff at New Hampshire bookstores proposed 'Cider Monday' as a holiday to celebrate on America's Cyber Monday, the idea caught on with other indie sellers.

Melanie Stetson Freeman
Various retailers are celebrating 'Cider Monday,' in which shoppers who go to brick-and-mortar stores will receive free cider and, at some locations, discounts and freebies.

You’ve doubtless heard of today’s nickname of Cyber Monday, in which many Americans frantically log onto their computers and take advantage of online deals from retailers. But how about Cider Monday?

According to industry newsletter Shelf Awareness, the idea originated from The Toadstool Bookshops, which are located in New Hampshire. The staff proposed starting a new tradition and encouraged people to stop into their three locations for a free cup of cider made from “squished micro soft apple products” as well as to “see some real people and have a good time checking out what's in our stores. It's sure to be a heartwarming experience. We can promise no crashing websites, our 'servers' won't be overloaded and we bet they will even smile at you!” 

The idea caught on with other retailers, including Barre, Vt.’s Next Chapter Bookstore, which is offering a 10 percent discount to anyone who mentions the phrase “Cider Monday.” Oblong Books & Music worker Suzanna Hermans told Shelf Awareness she brought the idea to other retailers in Millerton and Rhinebeck, N.Y. and that eight businesses joined up right away.

Massachusetts’ Odyssey Bookshop added apple cider doughnuts to their day, while other bookstores in Connecticut and Pennsylvania told Shelf Awareness they’d be celebrating the new holiday at their own locations. 

Kenny Brechner, a worker at Devaney, Doak & Garrett Booksellers in Farmington, Me., told the local newspaper the Daily Bulldog that shoppers who partook in Cider Monday could enjoy “a cup of cider from a server sure to smile at you and not crash, shelves of great holiday gift ideas right there to touch and feel, friendly real people to help, and the knowledge that proceeds from your purchase stay in your community.”

If you celebrate today, enjoy your cup of cider.

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