For all the stories on the shelves at Ouray Bookshop, the one with the happiest ending might just be that of how owners Brian and Amy Exstrum came to own their business on Ouray’s Main Street
Raised in Ouray and Grand Junction, Amy, a home economics teacher, met Brian in Glenwood Springs in the 1980s, where he had been transferred for natural gas work. They married in Ouray in 1989, and soon relocated to Brian’s home state of Nebraska.
Despite being so far from home, Amy always kept Ouray in her heart. She and her twin children, Charlie and Olivia, visited the area during summers to spend time with family. Amy and Olivia began working at Buckskin Booksellers in Ouray during those summers, which at the time was owned by Amy’s close friend Robert Stoufer. In January 2019 Stoufer retired and Amy saw an opportunity. She convinced Brian that after 40 years in the energy industry, it was time for a second act in the bookselling business. Amy and Brian returned from Nebraska and reopened the shop in May 2019 as Ouray Bookshop. After nearly 30 years away, Amy was finally home.
These days you might catch Amy and Brian making the two-block commute from their house to the shop with Charlie, who lives with them in Ouray and works at the shop. Once there, you’ll no doubt find them doing what they love best about their new line of work: meeting all kinds of people and talking about books.