Miner’s Doll & Toy Store unveils beloved statue replica

OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (WLOX) - Community members in Ocean Springs gathered for a block party at Miner’s Doll and Toy Store, Wednesday.

The celebration included the unveiling of a statue that holds a lot of sentimental meaning for the Miners. The current owner of the store, Merileigh Miner Furr said the original statue was gifted to her parents back in 2015.

That’s the year Maryalice and John Miner celebrated their 90th birthdays in front of their beloved toy store in downtown Ocean Springs. The Ocean Springs Chamber of Commerce surprised the couple with a little statue of two kids on a bicycle.

“Every morning my mom and dad would park the car. They would come rub the head of the statue, make a little wish or say a little prayer, blessing and they would come and open their door,” Merileigh said.

The statue in front of the store was stolen last year. According to Merileigh, they were able to fund a replica of the statue with the help of the community and the Ocean Springs Chamber of Commerce.

Chamber Executive Director Cynthia Dobbs Sutton said the statue meant a lot to the whole community.

“Mr. and Mrs. Miner’s daughter, Merileigh, has asked that the statue is two little kids on a bike riding into Miner’s toy store. So, it’s facing Miner’s toy store, so it looks like they are on the way to Miner’s toy store to shop,” Sutton said.

Wednesday’s celebration was also organized to resemble the 2015 gathering.

“We got the tent all recreated. It was such a sweet event for the parents, grandparents, elderly people that didn’t really get out very much. We wanted to recreate that. A sweet event that was just about feeling good,” Merileigh said.

The Miners invite everyone to stop by the toy store on Washington Avenue to see the new statue.

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Leslie Rojas

Leslie Rojas

Leslie Rojas comes to WLOX from the Los Angeles area where she earned her degree in Journalism from California State University Long Beach.