David's Story

David Johnson, a former Mariners Inn client, creates beautiful gazebos using his considerable artistic talent, a great deal of creativity, and the patience he learned in recovery. “I learned patience during recovery, and that’s stuck with me,” he says.

Using bamboo, toothpicks, popsicle sticks, old mini blinds, buttons, mirrors, and other materials, Mr. Johnson painstakingly creates these works of art. He then varnishes them using ingredients such as coffee and different colors of Kool-Aid.

Despite the simplicity of the materials he uses, Mr. Johnson’s gazebos are delicately and precisely craft ed. They are generally up to fourteen inches tall, and each one has a working swing. Each gazebo takes one to two weeks to complete.




Mr. Johnson sells his gazebos for between $50 and $150, depending on size. The money helps him cover his bus fare and other expenses. He hopes to start his own business soon.

Each gazebo features a hidden pull out drawer at its base. “I really enjoy the surprise on people’s faces when they pull out the steps,” he says.

Mr. Johnson is an example of how every person has something to offer the world, if they just have the opportunity to unlock their potential. Overcoming substance abuse at Mariners Inn allowed Mr. Johnson to gain the skills he needed to begin to create his beautiful gazebos.

There are many more talented men at Mariners Inn who are working to overcome enormous barriers in their lives. Thank you for you support of Mariners Inn and the work we do.


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