Photo Credit: Joshua L. Jones
As quickly as it arrived, it has gone away: Bombs Away Books, the local anarchist book store, DIY music venue and community space has closed, according to the Athens Banner-Herald.
The shop opened underneath the Broad Street Jittery Joe's in early September, a welcome addition to gentrified downtown Athens. It hosted all-ages, alcohol-free concerts regularly during its two-month existence.
Organizer Joseph Turner says the group behind the space will remain active in the community, including offering a "free school" series of classes and creating a local chapter of Food Not Bombs.
From the ABH article:
"We are in the process of starting a Food Not Bombs here, which is a group that’s been around since the ’80s, and it started from the anti-war and anti-globalization movement," Turner said. "What it does is offer free food to anybody that’s usually vegan or vegetarian, and just go out and have it ready for people and basically talk about problems such as ecological waste—opening the dialogue."
A Food Not Bombs group was previously active in Athens, but has not been operational for some time.
Bombs Away's punk rock show scheduled for this Saturday, featuring Karbomb, Rational Anthem, Campaign and Maxine of Arc, has been moved to The World Famous.
UPDATE: Bombs Away Books has sent Flagpole the following statement, further explaining the changes. (Emphases are ours.)
Bombs Away Books has closed our doors at the location on East Broad Street below Jittery Joe’s for many reasons. The purpose of this statement is to explain what our plans are and why we have decided to move.
The projects and people that make up Bombs Away are much more important than making sure we have a hip little storefront downtown. One huge problem was the fact that BA was getting associated with our landlord’s businesses, which clashed with what we believe in. Another problem was that we were constantly trying to make sure that each event that we did would bring in enough cash for making rent. Being limited to four shows a month and being charged for anything additional by our now former landlord kind of shot us in the foot. As stated earlier, there were multiple reasons why we moved and anyone who spent enough time at the space with us understands these reasons. We were not given the resources we had originally thought were included with our rent and our service agreement started to become problematic.
Regardless, we are looking at a temporary location to open by next month or two at the latest and to stay there until August when the space we want to move to permanently will be available. We are in the process of acquiring a space that we will be able to operate out of that is self-sustaining.
The East Broad location served its purpose, and that was to establish our collective and to seek out other radicals. Now, we will focus on our projects in the community, including Food Not Bombs, Athens Free School, Athens Radical Mental Health Group, various events and many other projects. If you want to know what we are up to, check out our page at facebook.com/bombsawaybooks and shoot us a message if you want to come to a meeting or want to be involved. We are taking this time to grow and to make our collective stronger. We all believe that this is going to bring something much bigger than what we were doing out of East Broad Street. Do not worry, we are just getting started.