Tattoo artists ink book worms at Denver library, raising money for charity

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DENVER, Colo. -- Normally the only ink one would find at the Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzalez Library on West Colfax lies between book bindings. But on Sunday, the ink jumped from the page to people’s skin.

The library is not just about the books,” said Melissa Dewitt. “There’s a lot of really cool stuff going on.”

Dewitt is stepping out of her comfort zone and doing something unorthodox: getting a tattoo at the library.

“I’m mostly excited. I’m not afraid of the pain or anything,” Dewitt said. “I’m just nervous about putting something on forever.”

Dewitt is one of more than 100 people that crammed into the library on Sunday as Certified Tattoo Studios rolled out the green tables and ink to give out booked-themed tattoos. Money raised went to the Denver Public Library Friends Foundation.

“We’re just trying to break some of the stereotypes,” said Certified Tattoo Studio President Nando Mondragon.I feel like books have kind of saved my life and given me the knowledge that I needed to start over.”

Dewitt chose a Harry Potter tattoo, as a memento to her childhood. Tattoo artists offered other stencils, from book worms to the Dewey decimal system. For people not trying to go permanent, washable press-on tattoos were offered for suggested donations.

Like the books in this building, each tattoo tells its own story. Mondragon says they extended the service for several hours because of the demand. He said he hopes to host more similar events in the coming months.

Mondragon said the event raised thousands of dollars for the Denver Public Library Friends Foundation.

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