In Sunshine Sketches the fictional "Little Town" is Mariposa on the shore of Lake Wissanotti. Leacock resisted efforts to tie Mariposa to his time in Orillia, Ontario noting:
"Mariposa is not a real town. On the contrary, it is about seventy or eighty of them. You may find them all the way from Lake Superior to the sea, with the same square streets and the same maple trees and the same churches and hotels."
The work is populated with timeless archetypes of small towns, treated carefully with affection and humour. Modern reader's will be reminded of Garrison Keillor's Lake Wobegon from Prairie Home Companion. The sinking of the steamboat Mariposa Belle -- featuring "one of the smartest pieces of rescue work ever seen on the lake" -- is one of the best-loved and most admired vignettes in Sunshine Sketches
The following characters populate Sunshine Sketches