Beloved For More Than Its Books
The Wild Bookstore approaches a chapter’s end, but is hopeful someone writes its next storyline.
Writer / Keriann Rich
Anyone visiting downtown Noblesville will notice the adorable awning and storefront display boasting children’s books and attracting readers of all ages. The Wild Bookstore, located at 884 Logan St., is a gem of the square and the only independently owned and operated bookstore in the city.
Since 2010, Mike and Debbie Marinaro have provided a true picture-book store — the kind that makes you feel warm and fuzzy when you walk through the door.
Now many bookworms in Noblesville are feeling heavy-hearted with the Marinaros’ announcement to sell the business, as they carry out an exciting new chapter of their lives — becoming first-time grandparents.
“This has been an amazing journey for us,” said Debbie Marinaro. “It has not been an easy decision to make, but our loyal customers truly get it when we share our personal reasons for stepping away from this special place.”
What makes it special
Browse the bookshelves and you can find everything from touch-and-feel first books, to princess, animal and character stories, to a new generation of classic chapter series. The store’s charming selection offers that special find for all ages, from infant to teen and adults. It’s also a place where local, homegrown authors are welcome and featured on the shelves.
Alaina Shonkwiler, economic specialist for the city of Noblesville, values what this business brings to the square’s offerings. “The Wild Bookstore is a little shop of stories, magic and wonderment,” said Shonkwiler. “It offers educational resources to parents and anyone who loves to stroll into a bookstore. Our city leaders, visitors and customers experience not just a children’s bookstore, but also a community gathering place.”
Beyond the books
In addition to the small-store shopping experience, specialty programming makes this a true destination. Storytellers Miss Rosie and Miss Terri host weekly story times on Monday and Thursday mornings, attracting little ones with bright eyes and open ears. Birthdays, tea parties and themed events are also an important element of the store, and provide opportunities to create special memories for those celebratory moments.
Connecting the arts
As an independent business, The Wild Bookstore embraces creativity to connect the community, children and art. Throughout the store, you’ll find colorful artwork on display, created by students from Noblesville elementary schools. “Each month we rotate and display artwork from each of our schools,” explained Debbie. “It’s a great way to show the developing talent of our children.” The bookstore also hosts opening receptions for the schools and their artists, allowing 20 percent of the store’s sales during that time to serve as a fundraising effort.
“I love displaying student art at The Wild Bookstore,” said Nancy Henry, art teacher at White River Elementary. “The students and parents are always so excited to come and view our masterpieces in a public space! I also love the public to be informed about what students are doing with art in elementary school. Displaying in the community is a wonderful way to connect too.”
Passing the book light
At the end of this month, the Marinaros will either pass the book light to a new owner or The Wild Bookstore will close as a once beloved business on Noblesville’s downtown square. Let’s all cross our fingers that someone reading this story will recognize what a cute little bookstore this is and will make sure it continues right here in a community already embracing it with open arms. Anyone interested in more information about the sale of The Wild Bookstore is encouraged to call Deb Marinaro at 317-773-0920.