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Fundraising Event Combines The Library & Tattoos: 'It Was Worth It'

By Michael Abeyta

DENVER (CBS4) - Nicole Annen was the first person in a line in front of the Rodolfo "Corky" Gonzales Library in Denver Sunday morning. She stood there for five hours before going inside.

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"I showed up with chairs and umbrellas and snacks," she said. "We read books because we're at the library."

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She was one of hundreds of people who showed up at the library for more than just the books. They're here to get inked.

"To get tattooed inside of a public library is pretty unique," Annen said.

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The Denver Public Library teamed up with Certified Tattoo Studio to hold a fundraiser. People came to the library to get a literary-themed tattoo and a portion of the proceeds went to the library.

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Nando Mondragon is the president of Certified Tattoo. He says this was an exciting project for him.

"I feel a little nervous right now honestly. I didn't know if we were going to be able to pull this off" he said.

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He is a Denver native and has fond memories of the library.

"I hung out at the Athmar Library quite a bit in my summer days as a kid in the city of Denver, and it kept me out of a lot of trouble."

He says his time there helped him become the artist he is today.

"I read man. My dad was an artist so I kind of grew up looking into art books and history of art" said Nando. "To just have those resources at my fingertips was helpful."

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Now he wants to give that gift to more Denver kids.

"I kind of want to give back to the community now, and give teenagers in the city of Denver more options on things they could be doing with their free time. Like going to the library."

Annen is a bit of a bibliophile too, and in case she ever forgets, now she has a book on her ankle to prove it. She says she doesn't regret it.

"Absolutely it was worth it. I'm excited."

Michael Abeyta is a 4th generation Coloradan and a Multimedia Journalist for CBS4. His stories can be seen on CBS4 News at 5 & 6. He is on Twitter! Follow him @AbeytaCBS4.

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