A new event will bring the magic of reading and pages of an imaginative children’s book to storefront windows in downtown Brentwood.
The Brentwood Library is hosting the city’s first StoryWalk, from Sept. 10 to Oct. 1, an event that invites residents to stroll the sidewalks of downtown Brentwood and read through the pages of Lafayette author and illustrator Michael Slack’s “Monkey Truck,” at featured stops.
“This will be a way to celebrate reading with the community,” said Brentwood Senior Community Library Manager Liz Fuller. “It’s also a way for the library and the business community to partner together and help promote reading and local businesses at the same time.”
While the event is new to Brentwood, StoryWalk was heralded by Pittsburg’s Senior Community Library Manager Ginny Golden, who brought it to the East Bay. Pittsburg hosted their own StoryWalk, from May 1 to 21, featuring the 2016 Newbery Medal winner “Last Stop on Market Street,” by Matt de la Peña.
“It was really special for the community,” said Golden. “Everyone enjoyed reading the book, as well as the activities that went along with it, and seeing all of the different connections in the community.”
Since the event, other towns have started planning their own StoryWalk events, including Moraga. Each town chooses their own book and plans activities and reading stops. Each stop in Brentwood will feature large, laminated pages from the children’s picture book “Monkey Truck” displayed in the window of a downtown Brentwood business.
Many businesses have volunteered to be featured stops, but the library is still in need of business sponsors to help support events that coincide with StoryWalk. According to Fuller, the Brentwood Library is using library funds to purchase books; Cap’s Oak Street Bar and Grill is donating lunch to the author and library host; and Friends of the Brentwood Library is paying for the community center rental for special events that tie into the theme of the book.
Scheduled events include a visit from Capt’n Jack Spareribs, who will entertain guests at the Brentwood Community Center with magic, juggling and maybe even a talking monkey. A Hawks, Honkers and Hoots event is also planned, which will introduce kids to local raptors and water birds as they learn about conservation. The movie “George of the Jungle” will be featured for a special movie night at the center, where guests can bring blankets and sleeping bags and ‘camp out’ while they enjoy the movie.
The StoryWalk will conclude with a special visit from author and illustrator Michael Slack at the community center, where he will be featured for an author talk and book signing. Before his presentation, Slack will guide everyone through the pages of the book in downtown Brentwood, stopping at each storefront page display.