The importance of the stories we tell are never more obviously important than when we look at the programs we offer for our communities. We are kicking off the Story Festival and More this week looking at the many ways stories are told, preserving our history, building our character and teaching new skills.

Our young people, who were recognized last week for competing and earning prizes as part of the summer reading program, experienced many types of stories this summer. As part of the program, we read books for fun and enjoyment, but we also encourage reading to develop skills, knowledge, character and insight. With the theme, “Build a Better World,” topics from construction to conservation, Bedtime Math exercises, biographies, and biographies, they learned and earned at the same time. They not only checked out books, they listened to some books, read magazines, listened to music of varying types, and participated in programs that allowed hands-on exploration with everything from building things from recycling to structures with Keva Planks, and much more.

With over 300 people participating in our reading challenges, and nearly 1,000 attending the many programs over the summer, we are always hopeful that we helped the learning process by engaging the students until the summer is over and the hand-off to the school teachers occurs. It’s a unified goal to make sure our students become great students and leaders for not only Story City and our surrounding communities, but for our state and country.

Helping us throughout this process has been a strong and supportive business community. Without them, we would have struggled to bring some of the great tools into the library to use. We want to thank again all the sponsors, which include: Oakland Corporation, McDonald’s of Story City, Harlan’s Food Mart, NuCara Pharmacy, Key Cooperative, McFarland Clinic, ISPT, LLC, American Packaging, PDG Printing, Story City building Products, Casey’s of Story City, Security State Bank, MH Eby, Inc., Dairy Queen of Story City, GNB Bank, Van Wall Equipment, Kaffe Geita and Dinners by Dawn.

This week will be the first full week of programming, with Storytime for preschooler moving to Wednesdays and Fridays, and our after school program with WeDo Lego Robotics (1st through 4th) starting on Thursday afternoon at 3:45 p.m.. The robotics program continues as last year, with a limit of 10 students each session. Registration is necessary. If in doubt if you have your child registered, please call the library at 515-733-2685 to confirm. A waiting list will be compiled for the next session once this session is full.

The Storytelling Workshop by Darrin Crow and the Writers’ Forum will both be at the Library meeting room Saturday morning. “Making A Story, Your Story” will begin at 9:30 a.m., with the writers’ forum beginning at 11:30.

We hope to see many familiar faces at the library programs this week and the Storytelling events starting on Thursday evening.