Owl’s well at the Village Mercantile

SARANAC LAKE — If you give even the tinest hoot about owls, this is the event for you.

The Village Mercantile (formerly The Community Store) will be hosting Adirondack Raptor proprietor Mark Manske for a book signing and a meet and greet with one of his special owl friends on Saturday, Dec. 21 from noon until 2 p.m.

Mark Manske has written two mystery novels for youth centered around Marvin Stone, “Stoney,” and his buddy Bill Short as well as a mysterious owl, a modern-day treasure hunt, and a skunk. The North Country is the featured locale.

The books, “The Great Snowy Owl Caper” and “Chasing the Ghost of an Adirondack Elephant” will both be available for purchase and signing at The Village Mercantile on the Saturday before Christmas. The books are illustrated by former Brasher Falls Central School art teacher Kristen Towne, who worked with Mr. Manske for 17 years at the school while he was a science teacher there.

The Village Mercantile will be open from 9 to 6 p.m. that day and has a large assortment of unique Adirondack gifts for all ages. The store now also has a robust e-commerce website (https://villagemerc.com) that can help make holiday shopping fun and easy, especially for shipping Adirondack-made and inspired products.

Mark established Adirondack Raptor, Inc., in 2008 and is the founder and sole owner of the company based in Dickinson Center. Mark was a public school educator for 27 years, an Adjunct Professor at Paul Smiths College and has also served as a wildlife rehabilitator, a master falconer, a master raptor bander, and a licensed nuisance wildlife control agent.

Mark has published stories in his column in the EMBARK, a periodical that is published every other month by the Adirondack Daily Enterprise in Saranac Lake. He has also published several articles on birds of prey in scientific journals through the years. Mark writes that the mission of his business, Adirondack Raptor, Inc., “is to educate the public about the importance of birds of prey in the environment, and to manage and conduct research on local raptor populations in order to protect the species.”

Terry Reed, store manager at the Village Mercantile, is especially excited to be able to host this event. She met Mark and his owl previously and said, “That owl is amazing! The way it turns its head almost all the way ’round, wow! I wake up in the morning sometimes and can barely move my neck in any direction!” She went on to say, “I am so looking forward to sharing this experience with children and their parents as well as the wider Saranac Lake community. The bond between Mark and his owl is heart-warming to see. This will be a time for fun and learning too!”

The Village Mercantile on Main Street continues to be a mainstay of commerce for the Saranac Lake community chockfull of clothing, accessories, natural health aids, lots of maple products, household items, books and everyday needs.

For more information on the Village Mercantile e-commerce site or the store at 97 Main Street, call: 518 354 8173 or email: terry@community-store.org.


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