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News and Events
Meet the Saggy Baggy Elephant during a Book Blast!
The 10th Annual Simon Kidgits Club Book Blast will bring out a storybook classic! The Saggy Baggy Elephant will make an appearance at the Columbia Center Mall on Wednesday, February 23rd, helping kids discover the magic of reading at a special Kidgits event! The event runs from 10 am to noon and will also feature local celebrity readers to provide story time and interactive activities that bring the books to life.
The Saggy Baggy Elephant is a classic character from the Golden Book story series; however, other stories will play a part in reading segments to let children's imaginations take them on a fun-filled journey. Tenant support will also provide several craft activities for kids participating at the event.
Free First Time Parent Classes
A series of free parent education workshops will be offered beginning next week to parents of newborn, first-born children. Parents attending will receive information on a wide range of parenting topics including: safe and healthy practices for babies and families, reading and understanding developmental cues, positive parenting, nutrition, and early learning activities. By attending 5 of the 6 sessions, parents are eligible for a free book a month for 5 years through the Dolly Imagination Library.
English classes will be on Wednesdays starting January 16th with morning classes at 10:00 am at Keewaydin Library in Kennewick and evening classes will be at 6:00 pm at the Children’s Center. Spanish classes are also offered starting Thursdays, January 17th at 1:00 pm at the Pasco Library.
The program is sponsored the Community Solutions initiative as a start-up project of the “Our Babies Can’t Wait” campaign, and funded through the United Way of Benton and Franklin Counties.
For more information or registration contact Joely NyeFelt at 509.222.7323 and 509.987.2229 or email@example.com.
Donate Books, Win a Nook
New Teachers Receive Library of Books for their Classrooms
Some of the community’s newest teachers received a library of books for their classroom thanks to Goodwill Industries of the Columbia. Through a partnership with the Children’s Reading Foundation of the Mid-Columbia, Goodwill Industries provided new teachers in Benton and Franklin Counties serving children Kindergarten to 3rd grade 50 new and 50 gently used books.
Due to the mission and focus of Goodwill Industries, additional libraries were made available to teachers in special needs classrooms.
Teachers receive a small stipend to help them as they start their career, but many educators spend a large portion of their own money to purchase books and supplies when starting out. On Friday, September 28th, more than 40 teachers were presented with their First Teacher Library by Goodwill Industries at the Country Gentleman Catering & Restaurant.
This year’s First Teacher Library Recipients are: Jenna Mayer at Badger Mt. Elementary; Jody Younger at Basin City Elementary; Estella Bross and Megan Campbell at Captain Gray ELC; Kimberly Brandner at Connell Elementary; Vanessa Arslanian and Tiffany Fifes at Eastgate Elementary; Laura Mills, Laurel Jackman, Melissa Dalesky and Erica Mendez at Emerson Elementary; Timothy James at Finley Elementary; Andrea Salisbury at James McGee Elementary; Heath Low at Jefferson Elementary; Cristina Hutchinson, Emily Morgan and Jody Bishop at Keene-Riverview Elementary; Lisa Hall at Lewis & Clark Elementary; Jessica Baker at Liberty Christian School; Angela Vargas, Jenna Richter, Jessica French, Lucero Garcia and Teresa Hernandez at Longfellow Elementary; Kathy Martin at Marcus Whitman Elementary; Petra Perez, Hillary Tinnesand and Consuela Stepanenko at Robert Frost Elementary; Camille Wall at Ruth Livingston Elementary; Kendra Leggett, Morgan Chittenden and Josh Guyll at Tapteal Elementary; Amanda Vaughn, Jasmine Ola, Cirenio Salamanca, Yesenia Lopez, Irene Ray, Meghan Rodriguez, Evan Egerer and Amber Brady at Virgie Robinson Elementary; Ginger Bryan at Vista Hermosa Elementary; Kori Cannon, Jessica Smith and Stephanie Betcher at Westgate Elementary; and Rachel Vaughn at Whittier Elementary.
Event Raises More Than $84,000 for Literacy Programs
Jessica Blankenship, Committee Chair stated, “Friday night was a perfectly beautiful late summer evening as the Reading Foundation held our annual, and popular, Books & Vines dinner and auction at Bookwalter Winery. Books & Vines has become a signature event for the organization and as a committee we look forward to getting together and planning each year. Due to the generosity of our sponsors and guests, we were able to raise over $84,000 which will benefit our programs and assist us in carrying out our mission. Thank you to all our supporters and we look forward to seeing you again next year.”