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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Boo Radley’s in downtown Spokane sold to longtime employee

UPDATED: Tue., March 1, 2022

Boo Radley’s manager Jen Menzer is buying the store from owners Andy and Kris Dinnison. Menzer has worked at the store for more than 20 years. (Colin Mulvany/The Spokesman-Review)
Boo Radley’s manager Jen Menzer is buying the store from owners Andy and Kris Dinnison. Menzer has worked at the store for more than 20 years. (Colin Mulvany/The Spokesman-Review)

Boo Radley’s in downtown Spokane is changing hands after nearly three decades of ownership under Kris and Andy Dinnison.

The Dinnisons are selling the business at 232 N. Howard St. to longtime employee and the store’s current manager Jen Menzer, Kris Dinnison said Tuesday.

Boo Radley’s, whose name was inspired by a character in the classic novel “To Kill a Mockingbird,” has gained popularity among locals and tourists for its collection of unique, offbeat gifts and pop culture items.

“It seems like kind of the natural thing to do having been here for almost 21 years,” Menzer said of the purchase. “Working here is sort of second nature. It’s my second home. I love it here and I can’t imagine doing anything else.”

As part of the deal, the Dinnisons will retain a small portion of ownership and involvement in Boo Radley’s with plans for Menzer to become the sole owner within five years, Kris Dinnison said.

Financial terms of the sale were not disclosed.

Menzer has played a significant role in the success of the business by buying merchandise for the shop, overseeing day-to-day operations as well as training and mentoring employees, Kris Dinnison said.

“She has been really integral for us at Atticus and Boo Radley’s,” Kris Dinnison said. “Jen has taken the idea we started in 1993 and further expanded it, shaped it and made it better.”

The decision to sell Boo Radley’s has been in the works for several years, but recent health issues and a desire for more free time prompted the Dinnisons to move forward with the sale.

“Spokane has been so amazing – especially over the last couple of years – to small businesses and ours in particular,” Kris Dinnison said. “We feel so grateful and know that they will continue to support Boo Radley’s.”

The Dinnisons told employees in 2019 they were planning to sell the business with intentions to finalize the sale in 2020. Those plans, however, were put on hold during the pandemic, Kris Dinnison said.

“With COVID and all the craziness, we wanted to make sure we were selling Jen a healthy store,” Andy Dinnison said in a statement. “2021 was the best year Boo’s and Atticus have ever had. It’s a perfect time to pass the torch.”

The Dinnisons will continue to own and operate Atticus Coffee & Gifts, Kris Dinnison said.

The Dinnisons opened Boo Radley’s at 5 N. Post St. in 1993. About four years later, they relocated Boo Radley’s to its current location across from Riverfront Park, nearly doubling the size of the store, according to newspaper archives.

In 2009, the Dinnisons bought the former 4 Seasons Coffee shop at 222 N. Howard St. and transformed it into Atticus Coffee & Gifts.

Customers can expect retail operations to remain unchanged at Boo Radley’s, which will continue to offer one-of-a-kind items, Menzer said.

“It will be the same Boo Radley’s that everybody knows and loves,” she said. “I want to keep the same fun vibe.”Amy Edelen can be reached at (509) 459-5581 or at amye@spokesman.com.

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