Faces of Deland: a Local Bookshop with A Big Heart for Community

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In the process of creating my first coloring book, DeLand, Florida, I researched and photographed the local landmarks, on and off the beaten path. The most interesting part of the research process, to me, are the people I get to meet and talk to around a town.

DeLand, Florida is known as the Athens of Florida.  In my adventures I found that DeLand has a rich history, and everyone here is about preserving that history. 

Meet Janet Bollum, owner of the Muse Bookshop, featured in the DeLand coloring book. It was founded in 1980 in the historic downtown of DeLand and has been a staple ever since. They support the preservation of history by offering many books and old maps on the topic.

The bookstore also offers bestsellers, new releases as well as area topographical maps and antiquarian books dating as far back as into the 1700′s.  

If you’re looking for that hard to find or out of print book, the Muse Bookshop may be able to assist you in finding it, and they do offer worldwide shipping.

Muse Bookshop also features and loves to support local and national authors. Check out their events calendar.

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Janet Bollum is an advocate for shopping local and supporting your community.  Keeping funding in your community is important in supporting locally owned businesses.

I had the opportunity to ask the owner, Jan, a few questions about where she grew up and how she found herself owning and running a bookstore in DeLand, Florida.

“I grew up in Northern Minnesota, the second of five children. 

My dad worked for the telephone company and my mom was a stay at home mom.

I graduated from Moorhead State University with a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and was recruited by the Australian Government to teach in Melbourne, Australia. 

Before leaving in the Summer of 1972, I married my high school sweetheart, and we spent the next 2 1/2 years in Melbourne Australia.  We returned to the States with the idea of buying a bookstore. It just so happened my father was transferred to Orlando, Florida.  There was a business for sale in Downtown DeLand called McVicars Books, Cards, and Gifts.  We purchased it and proceeded to make it a full service new and antiquarian bookstore. 

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We have been in Downtown DeLand since July of 1980.  I have witnessed DeLand grow from a struggling to a vibrant downtown.  We have wonderful, independently owned, shops and restaurants.  We encourage all DeLandites, if they wish to retain a real instead of a virtual Downtown, to stop shopping via the Internet and support their downtown.  I realize you can't do all your shopping downtown but stop here first.”

We have wonderful, independently owned, shops and restaurants. We encourage all DeLandites, if they wish to retain a real instead of a virtual Downtown, to stop shopping via the Internet and support their downtown. I realize you can’t do all your shopping downtown but stop here first.”
Janet Bollum

It was such a pleasure being able to talk with Janet.  If you find yourself in Florida and happen to be in the DeLand area, check out the local shops, including, of course, the Muse Bookshop. You may be surprised at the unique items that you may find to bring home …


This was part 2 of the series “Faces of …”

If you’d like to see someone in the spotlight, I’d love to hear from you.