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Reading rocks!

U.P. Children’s Museum hosts ‘All About Books’

By TRINITY CAREY

Journal Staff Writer

MARQUETTE — The Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum was “All About Books” Thursday evening as families gathered for reading and activities as part of the museum’s Third Thursday Literacy Nights.

The Literacy Legacy Fund of Michigan sponsors the event on the third Thursday of each month to fill the museum with hands-on literacy activities for preschool- and elementary-aged children including book sales, book readings and children’s book-centered crafts.

“The main goal is to furnish free admission to the families and have the kids play and then they each get to take a book home for free at the end of the night,” said Phyllis Aurich, board member of the legacy fund.

Books handed out during the event are purchased through donor-funded grants obtained by the legacy fund as well as from assistance by event co-sponsor the Marquette County Steelworkers Coalition.

Usborne Books & More also held a book fair during the event. Fifty percent of proceeds raised from the book sale go back to the children’s museum to purchase books.

“I think that every kid should be exposed to books,” Aurich said. “The thing that hurts me the most is when I’m here at night and a parent says, ‘You don’t need anymore books. You have enough books at home,'” Aurich said. “I think it makes them much more knowledgeable. They know more about everything that’s going on.”

The Literacy Legacy Fund, now on its third year of hosting the literacy nights, aims to make Michigan citizens of all ages literate through the distribution of charitable funds.

“They have to learn how to read because there’s going to be times when they’re not going to have their computer and be able to Google something,” Aurich said. “The sad thing for me is that they really don’t know how to use libraries anymore, because they just punch the Google.”

Of course, the “All About Books” event was all about fun as well.

Third Thursday Literacy Nights will continue in October with a Fresh Coast Film Festival Literacy Night and in November with a Treasure Hunting Reading Night. Those interested in attending future events can call the museum before 5:30 p.m. the day of the event to order a $6 one-topping Domino’s pizza for delivery.

The Literacy Legacy Fund of Michigan, in collaboration with the Marquette Regional History Center, will host a “Read Between the Wines” wine-tasting fundraiser event from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8. Local history authors Tyler Tichelaar and Sonny Longtine will read passages from their books and a raffle and auction also will take place. Tickets are $35 and include a commemorative wine glass, wine sampling and light hor d’oeuvres as well as a chance to win an historical photograph. For more information about the event or the organization, visit literacylegacyfund.org.

Trinity Carey can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 243. Her email address is photos@miningjournal.net.