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Black-owned bookstore in Rochester recognized for its one-year anniversary



Rochester, New York — The only Black-owned bookstore in Rochester, Cerebral Kingdom, received a New York State Senate Proclamation to commemorate its first year in business.

On Saturday, the award was presented by Senator Jeremy Cooney, to the husband and wife co-owners, Anthony King and Zakiya McAdams-King.

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Cerebral Kingdom opened its doors and has continued to grow as a bookstore and community hub.

According to the co-owners, that part of their goal is to reduce barriers for members of the community to have books and reading material available that represents Black people’s thought leadership and culture, along with the many other contributions they have made throughout history.

“Our community thrives when local businesses are committed to service. Cerebral Kingdom’s mission-driven approach to improve access to the work of Black artists and authors while uplifting local creators is a welcome addition to State Street’s burgeoning business corridor,” said Sen. Cooney. “If we have learned anything over the past 21-plus months, it’s that we need spaces like Cerebral Kingdom and neighborhood-minded entrepreneurs to help us feel whole, as we look to recover.”

According to the store’s co-owners, they wanted to make Cerebral Kingdom “as least challenging as possible for people to access books that are highly reflective of positive imagery and thought of who we are, and the limitless contributions African Americans make and have made to America and the world.”

Cerebral Kingdom is located at 533 State Street in Rochester.