Annual Book Fest at Wisner Park

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ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) — The Family Reading Partnership of Chemung Valley held its annual book fest at Wisner Park on May 16.

Along with books, the event had live music and food.

Michelle Halperin, Vice President of the Family Reading Partnership of Chemung Valley, explained the thought process behind this celebration of literacy.

“We put together Book Fest as an opportunity for us to not only provide entertainment and free books to children, but also provide them with a lot of activities that would encourage families to read together,” said Halperin.

Halperin is also the chairperson for Book Fest and a 4th grade teacher in the Elmira City School District. She detailed how important reading is for children.

“When you have parents able to talk with kids about what they are reading, it goes beyond just the print that is on the page,” said Halperin. “You’re really able to talk to your kids about some more complicated pieces of life even with early, early children’s literature. Learning to share and what happens when you see a bully. You can see these themes from the very earliest of children’s books all the way through into the chapter books that the older children read.”

Katrina Morse, an author, wrote two books and sold them to the Family Reading Partnership. She gave these books away for free for children to read.

“Reading is really, really important,” said Morse. “You can’t underestimate how important it is to understand the world and open up your mind to adventure and possibilities. I feel like right now we need children to have big imaginations, so that they can solve big world problems. They are going to be the ones inheriting the world and so it starts with reading to children.”

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