Story & Song Bookstore Bistro
Press Release
April 4, 2022

Donna and Mark Kaufman

Amelia Island, Florida — Story & Song Bookstore Bistro Inc., founded by Amelia Island residents Mark and Donna Paz Kaufman in 2018, will be guided by a greater not-for-profit effort under a newly formed private operating foundation, Story & Song Center for Arts & Culture.

The catalyst for its formation was the support Story & Song received during the pandemic. According to Donna Paz Kaufman. “Each day people would ask how Story & Song was faring during the tremendous challenge of surviving the pandemic, and we listened to people tell us how much Story & Song had come to mean to them personally.”

Upon opening its doors in 2018, Story & Song contributed to the community in a variety of ways. Donna Paz Kaufman noted that many ongoing programs like book clubs, author talks, TED Talk facilitated discussions, independent film night, and story time for children have always been free and open to all to foster conversation, connection and community. The store was named after a concert series the couple launched in 2005 after moving to Amelia Island from Nashville, Tennessee.

During the pandemic, Kaufman described the number of additional efforts that went into motion. “Story Time programs and ‘A Banquet of Words’ with Ron Kurtz went live online, Story & Song led a fundraiser and partnered with the Nassau County Boys & Girls Club so each child in Nassau County schools meals program received a free book while they studied from home and developed the library at Micah’s Place.” She added, “Story & Song recently donated thirty-two $20 gift cards to the Boys & Girls Club to use to reward local students and hosts music lessons in a partnership with Arts Alive Nassau.”

Adding Story & Song Center for Arts & Culture, the couple explains, “allows us to leave all we’ve worked hard for to the private operating foundation to ensure that Story & Song remains as our gift to the community long after we’re gone.” Becoming a not-for-profit arts organization also allows Story & Song to be eligible for tax-deductible private donations and grant funding to expand programming.

Story & Song Bookstore Bistro was recognized as “Small Business of the Year” by the Chamber of Commerce after its first year as a gathering place in the community for meaningful connection and celebration of the literary, culinary, visual, and performing arts. Located in the central island neighborhood of Amelia Park at 1430 Park Ave., Story & Song is also online at StoryandSongBookstore.com. For more information call (904) 601-2118.

 

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