Stoughton bookstore launches GoFundMe in effort to go mobile

Since opening in January of this year, Itty Bitty Bookstore has only grown, and now the owner is looking for a new way to share her mission.
Dominique Lenaye standing in book shelves at Itty Bitty Bookstore
Photo by Larry Chua
Dominique Lenaye stands in Itty Bitty Bookstore

Since opening in January of this year, Itty Bitty Bookstore has only grown, and now the owner is looking for a new way to share her mission.

Itty Bitty Bookstore is one of few Black-owned bookstores in Wisconsin and the only Black-owned business on Stoughton’s Main Street. Owner Dominique Lenaye aims to make sure the shelves of the 120-square-foot store are stocked with books that provide diverse representation and storytelling.

As Itty Bitty, is in fact, in a small space as the name indicates, Lenaye launched a GoFundMe Tuesday to raise funds to purchase a mobile shop.

According to the GoFundMe, Lenaye hoped to move into a larger space within the current building, but it isn’t working out and doesn’t achieve the mission she has for the bookstore.

“I don’t find that a move to a larger space in one small town is what’s best for the store. It is simply just not accessible to all,” Lenaye says. “I am quickly gaining knowledge and becoming more aware of the fact that getting to my current store location is imbedded in privilege and I am asking for your help to change that.”

A mobile shop owner is moving to the West Coast and selling her mobile shop, so Lenaye is aiming to purchase the business. She says a mobile shop would allow her to make other access points to the store, especially for individuals who lack transportation or are unable to make it up the stairs to enter the store’s current location.

In the GoFundMe she says this will allow her to access to more people throughout Dane County. Itty Bitty will pop up at community centers, libraries, nonprofits, markets and other locations with the mobile capabilities.

“The store can hold community story times, arts and craft activities and also let those who have not had access, shop the diverse books,” Lenaye says.

Lenaye is hoping to raise $20,000 to purchase the mobile shop.

Footer that says Subscribe with covers of Madison Magazine