Melanie and Mike Easton take care to make everyone feel welcome at the Christian Book and Music store in Victoria. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Melanie and Mike Easton take care to make everyone feel welcome at the Christian Book and Music store in Victoria. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Christian bookstore’s Victoria location marks 80 years in business

The store opened on corner of Douglas Street, View Street in 1939

Francis Davis opened the Christian Book and Music on the corner of Douglas and View streets back in 1939 – the day Canada declared war, according to the latest owner.

“It’s more than a bookstore,” said Mike Easton, owner of the shop now on Nanaimo Street, that marked 80 years in business on Sept. 10.

Easton grew up working at the store as his parents bought it from the Hamilton family in 1975 when he was 11. When his parents semi-retired, he took over – although they still make deliveries as far north as Nanaimo every Wednesday. Easton’s wife and self-proclaimed book fanatic, Melanie, worked in the store as a teen before becoming a teacher and she has since returned to work at the bookstore.

READ ALSO: Moving Sidney’s Military Bookstore a Herculean task

Easton has seen many changes over the years as the store has moved seven times, a Nanaimo location opened and a Duncan location closed. He and Melanie are hopeful the current Victoria location on Nanaimo Street will be the last as the move was tough.

Now, the store has a cafe, a music section, a kids’ corner, a used book nook, gift wrapping, a prayer team and warehouse space that several groups use for worship. He refers to the store as a focal point in the local Christian community and for folks across Canada. With the addition of a website, the Easton’s have been able to reach customers in northern B.C., Alberta and Saskatchewan.

READ ALSO: Victoria book store begins challenge of moving 500,000 books

When the Catholic bookstore downtown closed, Easton made it his mission to carry products for the local Catholic community too.

The store serves as a gathering place for residents of all ages and all faiths, Easton explained. He noted that being a part of someone’s “pilgrimage to faith” is a special thing.

Easton’s children have chosen not to run the bookstore after he retires and eventually he will need to sell the store. He’s hopeful that a new owner would share the same vision and he’s excited to see what the next 80 years will look like.

The store’s 80th anniversary will be celebrated with a sale that runs from Sept. 19 to Oct. 14 and Easton is hoping to also have a little party with cake in mid-October.


@devonscarlett
devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

On May 10, Saanich council unanimously approved a 2020 budget with a 5.76 per cent property tax increase. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Saanich adopts 5.76% property tax hike for 2021

Budget includes $2.6 million to accelerate climate actions, active transportation targets

These are just a handful of Vancouver Island’s missing person cases. Clockwise from top left: Lisa Marie Young, Lindsey Nicholls, Micheal Dunahee, Jesokah Adkens, Belinda Cameron and Emma Fillipoff. (File photos courtesy of family members and police departments)
Gorge skull fragment could bring closure to one Greater Victoria missing person case

Skeletal remains found in Greater Victoria have not yet been identified

Colwood Fire Rescue (Katherine Engqvist/News Gazette staff)
Gas leak at Colwood Corners

Emergency crews on scene

According to Statistics Canada, Greater Victoria’s unemployment rose half a per cent to 6.2 per cent in April 2021 compared to the previous month. (Black Press Media File)
Unemployment in Greater Victoria continues to rise

April figures peg local unemployment at 6.2%

Rendering of a possible amphitheatre on the bluffs at the south end of the Royal Beach development. (Seacliff Properties image)
Colwood signs development agreement for Royal Beach at old quarry

Plan includes 18 hectares of park, 2,850 homes and lots of retail

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
VIDEO: B.C. to provide 3 days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

This house at 1514 Trumpeter Cres. in Courtenay is currently for sale, with a disclaimer that the property was used in a cannabis grow operation in the past. Photo by Record staff
Drug trafficking at Vancouver Island residence nets over $250K forfeiture

Ruling comes from a search warrant executed in 2016 on Trumpeter Crescent home

In this Monday, March 15, 2021 file photo a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine is pictured in a pharmacy in Boulogne Billancourt, outside Paris. Questions remained Wednesday about the future of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine in Canada, as Manitoba limited use of the shot and Ontario announced it planned to save an incoming shipment to use as second doses. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Christophe Ena, File
Questions remain about the future of the Oxford-AstraZeneca shot in Canada

More than two million Canadians have received AstraZeneca and 17 have been confirmed to have VITT

A Mountie issued B.C. RCMP’s first ticket for non-essential travel May 1. (Black Press Media files)
Driver ticketed, told to ‘return to Lower Mainland immediately’ by Vancouver Island police

The motorist was originally pulled over for driving-related offences May 1

Children walk back to their classroom while wearing masks and physical distancing at St. Barnabas Catholic School in Scarborough, Ont., in October, 2020. A group of B.C. teachers has issued an open letter calling for the relaxation of non-pharmaceutical interventions for children in B.C. schools. (Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press)
Group of B.C. teachers calls for easing of pandemic measures for students

Teacher group says ‘response to COVID is out of balance to the cost our youth are paying’

Adam Hamdan has been living in Christina Lake since November 2020. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Man acquitted on terrorist charges given temporary residence in Canada

Adam Hamdan had been facing deportation to Jordan, where he holds citizenship through his Palestinian parents

Lumber is shown in the back of a van in this recent image provided by the Saskatoon Police Service. The skyrocketing prices for lumber is fuelling a trend that has authorities across the country warning builders to keep their guard up. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Saskatoon Police Service-Const. Derek Chesney *MANDATORY CREDIT*
‘It is a gold mine:’ Builders warned of rising lumber thefts across Canada

Many North American mills curtailed production temporarily earlier in 2020 because of COVID lockdowns

RCMP arrested a man in north Nanaimo who wound up empty-handed after allegedly failing at shoplifting, bank robbery and robbery at ATM machine. (File photo)
Man arrested in Nanaimo after failed attempts at bank robbery, ATM mugging, shoplifting

RCMP cuff suspect in office-supply store after ‘short-lived crime spree’

Most Read