November 7, 2020

Mid-Continent Public Library has installed StoryWalks® at its East Lee’s Summit Branch (2240 SE Blue Parkway, Lee’s Summit, Mo.) and Woodneath Library Center (8900 NE Flintlock Road, Kansas City, Mo.). Made up of 15 yard-sized panels that look like book pages, the installations allow families to read a story as they take a walk outside. Both StoryWalks® feature the Library’s signature book, Grow a Reader: An Interplanetary Tale, written by Bridget Heos and illustrated by Dan Regan.
“These installations provide families a fun, unique opportunity to spend some time together, practice early literacy skills, and enjoy nature,” said Ritchie Momon, MCPL Chief Customer Experience Officer. “We welcome everyone to stop by and explore them.

The StoryWalks®, which are free and open to the public (no reservation required), will remain up through the end of the year and may rotate to other MCPL branches at a later time. The StoryWalk® at the East Lee’s Summit Branch is located on the northwest side of the building along the sidewalk, and at the Woodneath Library Center, the walk is located along the trail north of the building, near the Shoal Creek Elementary School. Customers are encouraged to wear face masks and asked to maintain social distancing while walking through the story.

Grow a Reader was published in 2015 by MCPL’s in-house publishing division, Woodneath Press. The book, which tells the story of MCPL mascot Marty the Martian who visits the Mid-Continent Public Library–Space Branch, was developed simultaneously with the launch of the Library’s early literacy initiative of the same name. More information about the Grow A Reader program can be found at mymcpl.org/Kids.

The StoryWalk® Project was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, VT, and developed in collaboration with the Kellogg-Hubbard Library in Montpelier, VT. The StoryWalk® concept has been used all 50 states and at least 12 other countries.