Michigan City MC Sports to close

The MC Sports in Highland is pictured. It closed last year and now the bankrupt chain is closing its Michigan City location.

The Times

The Highland Borders was so much more than a big box store — it was a beloved community gathering place that was home to author readings, a long-running writing group, and lengthy intellectual conversations over coffee.

The popular hangout spot was a friendly place where a clerk might see that you bought a David Foster Wallace book and ask if you had seen his interview on Charlie Rose. It closed in 2011 when the Ann Arbor-based bookstore chain, at the time the second largest in the country after Barnes & Noble, went bankrupt.

Late Times columnist Mark Kiesling wrote its passage “will leave a hole in our soul.”

But now a new corporate bookstore is moving into the same shopping mall, the Highland Grove Shopping Center, where Borders once was.

Alabama-based Books-a-Million, which has a store in the Southlake Mall in Hobart, plans to open a 2nd & Charles in the former MC Sports at 10239 Indianapolis Boulevard that closed in May. The company announced the 2nd & Charles will open in Highland on March 4.

It would be the first Indiana location for the chain, which is similar in concept to Half Price Books. 2nd & Charles is a used bookstore where people can buy and sell books, audio books, comics, vinyl records, CDs, video games, DVDs, and Blu Ray discs. It also carries tech products like e-readers, iPads, iPods and video game consoles.

2nd & Charles, which has slogans like “it’s all new to you,” also operates much like Half Price Books in that you can drop books off to sell at the counter, take a number and find out how much they’re worth while browsing the stacks.

The chain currently has about 30 locations nationwide.

The nearest location is in Naperville.

2nd & Charles will be Highland’s third bookstore, competing with Miles Books and Kolas Christian Bookstore downtown.

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Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.