Thursday, June 17, 2004

Library pirates promote reading

Good Things Happening

Allen Howard

"Avast, me hearties."

"Aye, me Bucko!"

Sounds of the seven seas? Not really. Those are sounds of Shelly Hamlin and Phyllis Hegner of the Main Library's public relations department, dressed as pirates to promote the library's summer reading program, "ReadQuest 2004: A Treasure Hunt.''

The program runs through July 31.

Hamlin and Hegner portrayed pirates on Fountain Square recently to promote the library's 31st annual summer reading program, which is open to all kids.

Library public relations employees Shelly Hamlin (left) and Phyllis Hegner promote the summer reading program.
Photo provided

"We selected the pirate theme because pirates are very popular now,'' Hegner said. "It has been very successful. ''

She said kids can reach four prize levels by reading five books or participating in reading activities for three hours. At each of the first three levels, kids can claim a trinket out of the treasure chest at their neighborhood branch library and enter a weekly drawing.

"Kids will win a free book when they reach the fourth level,'' Hegner said. "They can keep reading and enter weekly prize drawings even after winning their free book.''

This also applies to teens. A special bonus is set up for teens who visit a branch or the main library July 24-31 and participate in ReadQuest. They will win a free book.

For more information, call 369-4571.

Honesty pays

Honesty plays a major role in Camille Campbell's life.

During the Miss Teen Cincinnati 2004 Pageant last weekend, she was asked what was the most valuable thing she has learned in life. Her answer was "To be honest.''

"You never know when your time is up. Life is short and you don't want to have regrets,'' Camille said.

The 16-year-old Hughes Center junior will represent Cincinnati in a National Teen Pageant contest in Orlando, Fla., Dec. 17-22.

Camille won the right to go to Florida by beating 80 girls in the Miss Teen Cincinnati contest at Central State University Sunday. She competed in the 16-19 age category.

"I was so happy I cried,'' Camille said. "This was my first time in a pageant. I had no experience at all."

Camille also won a trophy for Miss Congeniality.

Money donated

Three organizations have received a total of $400,000 from the Jacob G. Schmidlapp Trusts.

They are Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation, which received $275,000 for downtown development, the Banks, Fountain Square and Over-the-Rhine; Talbert House received $100,000 to fund its management information systems upgrade, and provide more efficient programs and assistance to the 18,000 individuals served annually; Cincinnati Works received $25,000 for programs helping those living in poverty to become self-sufficient.

Adoption, foster care picnic

Information about adoptions and foster care will be available at a picnic from 6:30-8:30 p.m. July 13 at Parky's Farm in Winton Woods Park, Greenhills.

Adoptive and prospective foster parents from Hamilton, Clermont, Butler and Warren counties are invited.

They will be treated to free hot dogs, hamburgers and drinks.

Kinship caregivers fostering or adopting relatives' children and foster parents who provide respite care are invited.

The purpose of the gathering is to form support groups, which will meet regularly at a member's home.

"We are trying to develop a network of neighborhood support groups," said Linda Wesseler, a member of the planning committee and a foster and adoptive parent. "The idea is to exchange information among neighborhood support groups about the joys and challenges of foster parenting and adopting children from the county or state's foster care system or older and special-needs children, or those adopted internationally.

"We also want them to become advocates for improvements in the adoption and foster care system."

Wesseler of Loveland said each of the groups may decide whether to affiliate with the Ohio Family Care Association.

For more information, call 683-5734 or 378-2888 or visit

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