Crazy Wisdom Bookstore & Tea Room
Owners Ruth Schekter and Bill Zirinsky
Store Info During COVID-19
New Store Hours
For the latest pandemic news:
Crazy Wisdom’s main floor is available for browsing. The second floor, including the Community Room and Tea Room, will remain closed for the remainder of 2020. Books and other items that were located on the second floor have been moved to the main floor. All live music, book discussions, readers, and other Tea Room events have been canceled through December. The number of customers allowed in the store at a time is capped at 10. Masks are required. Those who cannot wear a mask are welcome to call the store at (734) 665-2757 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to make special arrangements. Multiple hand sanitizer stations are located throughout the store, and plastic shields have been installed at the information desk, front counter, and jewelry case. Even with the more crowded main floor, the aisles maintain ADA compliance. Crazy Wisdom does offer shipping, and the online store ShopCrazyWisdom.Com remains open for books, ebooks, and audiobooks.
Crazy Wisdom, owned by Bill Zirinsky and Ruth Schekter, is housed in a historic Main Street building complete with a tea room on the second floor. It is a notable “body/mind/spirit” bookshop of the U.S., with a deep and wide-ranging selection of books in its areas of specialization. The store is a very busy place, hosting monthly storytelling nights, a monthly Poetry Series, workshops and classes which take place daily in its Community Room, regular book-signings and book talks, Fairy Teas for children, and other special events.
What inspired you to open a bookstore?
We purchased the bookstore in 1989 from a woman who had a strong interest in Buddhism, women’s spirituality, and the divination arts. We’ve slowly expanded it in a very substantial way over the last 27 years, and added a Tearoom, a Community Room rented for local classes and workshops, and the region’s leading magazine for conscious living.
How do you think being a specialized bookstore has helped your business over the years? We’ve developed a regional consumer base that knows that we are unique, and committed to having a depth of inventory in our areas of specialization.
What has been your favorite part of owning and/or working in a bookstore? Hiring a staff of people who have an interest in serving people in the region who are searching in their lives – psychologically, spiritually, and in terms of holistic health and sustainability.
What has been your greatest challenge running a bookstore? Staff turnover in our Tearoom. Food Service is a much different enterprise than a bookstore, and we’ve been regularly challenged by too much staff turnover.
What role do you think books and bookstores play in the culture of Ann Arbor? They are a vital part of the identity of Ann Arbor. We live in a place that is proud of having birthed the Borders chain, and proud of having traditionally had more bookstores per capita than any other place in the country. This is a highly intellectual and progressive small city, and people here love books, love reading, love the interchange of ideas, love the written word.