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July 28, 2005
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Hema Sareen Mohan at (650) 688-6384 or
Paige Schoknecht at (916) 651-4011


SACRAMENTO – State Senator Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) today announced his selection of Bell’s Books, a family-owned bookstore in Palo Alto, as Senate District 11’s Small Business of the Year.  The announcement comes on the eve of Bell’s 70th anniversary.
Bell’s Books was established in downtown Palo Alto in 1935.  The bookstore stocks over 150,000 used, out-of-print, and rare volumes.  They offer more than 500 subject categories including history, horticulture, literature and the arts.
“Bell’s Books is a Palo Alto institution,” said Simitian.  “I hope this delightful, family-owned bookstore continues to be a part of our community for many more years.”
“This is an honor that I share with my parents who founded this store and our hard working staff,” said Faith Bell, owner of Bell’s Books.  “With the advent of Internet and chain bookstores, independent bookstores have been under siege.  I thank the vibrant community of bibliophiles, who have supported us for all these years.” 
Simitian said that at one level, choosing a single small business to honor from a district of 900,000 people in 13 cities and towns was a difficult choice.  At another level, however, Bell’s was “an obvious choice,” according to Simitian.
“I wanted to recognize the special contribution to the community of our independent bookstores,” said Simitian, “and Bell’s is a real gem.”

“As we watch the seemingly inexorable ‘malling of America,’” he observed “we ought to take a moment to appreciate the locally owned, locally operated enterprises that give a community its character.  Bell’s is just such a place.  It’s a treasure trove for anyone wants to be amused, informed, educated or transported by the world of books.”
Bell’s selection as 11th State Senate District’s Small Business of the Year was officially recognized this month at a legislative luncheon in Sacramento where Simitian made a presentation to Faith Bell, the owner of Bell’s Books.
Bell’s Books will hold their 70th anniversary celebration on Friday, August 5 from 6:00 to 9:00 pm.  The event is free and open to the public.  For more information about Bell’s Books, visit .


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