Karen Bell, Media Specialist
The Library at the Ruby C. Hunt YMCA
Shelby, North Carolina
This library hit on a great way to promote reading, with benefits: launching a StoryWalk series along the YMCA’s fitness trail. Combining children’s books, families and fitness in a single program gave a welcome boost to library use, family activities and community events. Planning began immediately for future programs.
To start off, the library worked with two elementary schools, holding readings in class and family events at the library with book-themed art, games and snacks. Posted along the outdoor trail over the course of a school year were laminated pages of children’s classics by Ezra Jack Keats, Maurice Sendak and Dr. Seuss, and a book on Shakespeare for a celebration of the Bard in partnership with other libraries. With a limitless book list available for display, such a program makes promoting literacy look easy.