|The next generation of readers traded in their books for paintbrushes on Monday.|
In a cooperative project between the Antigo Public Library and the city of Antigo’s Park and Recreation Department, city staffers and young readers spent the afternoon building and painting Little Free Libraries.
The idea was presented to the city by children’s youth services librarian Jackie Rammer and received an enthusiastic endorsement.
“It is a great example of organizational collaboration and is a wonderful way to promote literacy in public park areas that are enjoyed by families, youth and the community,” Sarah Repp, the city’s parks, cemetery and recreation director, said.
The construction and painting of the libraries was a team effort between the library, the parks department, and the youngsters. Paint color and door knobs were selected by the volunteer helpers through a voting process.
Repp said that one of the libraries will be placed at Peaceful Valley Park at the entrance to the very popular Rockin' Robin Community-Built Playground. The second will be installed at the Antigo Lake RV Campground, which is enjoyed by numerous visitors to the area.
Both parks are equipped with video surveillance.
Rammer explained that the project was done as part of the summer reading program. The day wasn’t all work. There were snacks and fun and all who attended got to help in some way, regardless of age.
Little Free Libraries operate on a “take a book, leave a book” philosophy. They will be filled with donated books, which users may take at will, hopefully returning them when completed and perhaps adding a title or two of their own.
Youngsters shown painting the new Little Free Libraries at Peaceful Valley Park include, from left, Eleanor Steger, Henry Steger, Charlie Kretz and Leo Kretz. The adults are, from left, youth services librarian Jackie Rammer, and city employees Dan Washatko and Dave Falk. Just visible in the background working on another library is Myles Steger. Parents are Holly and Aaron Steger of Verona and Heidi and David Kretz of Hahnweiler, Germany.