“We have a lovely new bench in front of the store. Customers love to take selfies with Samuel.”
–Kelly Evert, Village Books
On Saturday, May 26, the Fairhaven community celebrated the unveiling and dedication of a bronze sculpture of Mark Twain seated on a bench in front of Village Books and Paper Dreams.
In August 1895, Samuel Clemens — better known as Mark Twain — visited Fairhaven, WA. Artist Gary Lee Price’s life-sized bronze sculpture of Twain seated on a bench, reading a book, joins similar nearby sculptures of Fairhaven founder Dirty Dan Harris and community leader J.J. Donovan. Donated by community member Michael Botwin to the City of Bellingham and Village Books, the bench has space so visitors can sit awhile with the legendary writer and humorist.
The dedication included comments from local history author Brian Griffin, who recounted Twain’s visit to Fairhaven. Other speakers included Village Books and Paper Dreams co-owner Kelly Evert, who commented on Twain’s contribution to literature; Bellingham City Council member Gene Knutson, who shared how the Twain sculpture reflects the city’s commitment to the arts; Michael Botwin, who donated the bench; and sculptor Gary Lee Price. A reception with the artist followed the dedication.
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