Friday, August 10, 2012
From time to time I like to mention the various local businesses. Anyone who may be coming to Hoonah, whether on a cruise or traveling in their own boat may come upon this blog,and if they search diligently, they may find a post like this one that will enlighten them before their arrival. This shop, Fishbone Gifts, is the newest gift shop in Hoonah. It's located at the corner of Front Street and Harbor Way- at the entrance to the boat harbor. Years ago this building housed TJ's video. It was a video rental store in the days before satellite TV. It seems like when that was vacated there was a long time when it sat empty. There might have been another shop of some sort in the building for awhile but it didn't make too much of an impression on me if there was, because I don't remember it. Then for a short while it served as a new age type of massage parlor or some such thing. Don't get the wrong impression, it wasn't like one of those that men would frequent in seedy parts of a town- the lady who ran it was like a Mrs Natural type. Obviously I never needed a massage with mung bean oil while chanting or humming some spiritual mantra or whatever went on in there. Anyway, I'm happy to announce that it is now a delightful new gift shop, owned and operated by Monica Savland. Her husband Stan is a commercial fisherman and owns a seine boat. There is a picture hanging from the ceiling of her father-in-law, Joar Savland, with a record 400 plus pound halibut that he caught. The picture shows what I believe is a broom handle with a reel on it. It runs in my mind that he used a whole Dolly Varden trout or a whole Pink salmon as bait for the monster. Monica has been blessed with a great sense of style and her shop, while small, houses a diverse amount of merchandise that will appeal to tourists and locals alike. The prices are reasonable and I believe all the items she carries are made in Alaska. There are things made by various artists from throughout the state. To the best of my knowledge you won't find any totem poles with a Made in China label on the bottom. There are T-shirts and hats with designs from famous Alaskan artist Ray Troll, to animal skin drums to jewelry to books, two of which I've written. As I mentioned, she has very good tastes. Unlike some places I've seen where the gift shop appears to be an after thought, Monica has gone out of her way to provide a pleasing , well lit, well stocked shop with reasonably priced gifts. If you happen to be in town, I hope you'll stop in and give it a good examination. I think you'll be pleased.