DoverPhila Federal Credit Union partnered with 21 local organizations to support the 15th annual Family Reading Festival at New Towne Mall on Saturday, November 7.
The family-literacy event attracted over two thousand students in preschool through 8th grade. Children had the opportunity to participate in activities that incorporated the festival’s theme “Oregon Trail Route to Reading.”
Local schools, libraries, and businesses participated in the event by hosting hands-on demonstrations and educational programs about life on the Oregon Trail. The New Philadelphia Police Department provided fingerprinting for the kids and the Clayland Lions Club offered free eye screenings. The Family Reading Festival also featured a gaming station for older kids to play educational computer games, a Reading Corner that shared popular children’s stories, and an Imagination Station that inspired literacy activities. Local authors and favorite storybook characters also made an appearance at the annual event.
“It was a busy day at the mall as we had families lining the hallways at 9:30 a.m. to get backpacks for their journey on the Oregon Trail,” said Cindy Laughlin of East Central Ohio Educational Service Center. “We gave away 2,131 books this year compared to 1,705 books last year.”
In addition to the free book, 1,000 children received a free drawstring backpack. Donated items such as a Mini iPad 3, Nexus tablet, Leapfrog Reading System, gift baskets, and gift cards were given out as hourly door prizes. The event wrapped up with a school competition for the best Oregon Trail table decorations. The first place winner was Conotton Valley.
Visit the 2015 Family Reading Festival Facebook page to see pictures and to read more about the event.