Sylacauga is going all out in October, probably my favorite month of the year, and B.B. Comer Library is a big part of the fun of fall and fantasy that October brings. The bright, full moon and the leaves already swirling in that cool fall breeze remind us that summer is ambling on down the road.  October helps us wave a cheerful good-bye and look forward to days ahead.  The Scarecrow Contest is in full swing downtown, and Halloween and harvest make fun for all.

On a recent trip to the library to return a book, I made my way upstairs to the Children’s Department to see what children are reading these days. (Once a teacher, always a teacher!) The Children’s Department at B.B. Comer Library is something you don’t want to miss.  It is all decorated with orange and black to attract attention to all the fun books that children can select from about the season. Dress-up is fun, and there are lots of ideas for parents who join their children upstairs. Mandi Cantrell, the Children’s Librarian, does her part at Blue Bell Story Time reading such books as Pirate Pete’s Talk Like a Pirate. In case you have not visited the Story Time room, take a look.  It is carpeted and built in riser-style, so that children can see the pictures, very important to all children. The rounded room makes acoustics good so that everyone can hear.  A big shout out to Blue Bell for sponsoring such great fun for children                                                                    

Bare trees cleverly constructed from brown paper, and pumpkins are everywhere.  The goal is to get children to read, and the theme books that Marilyn, Christy, Teresa and Mandi display everywhere are temptations for children to read about fall fun. Halloween socks are hanging on the clothesline, and there is even a playful witch doing her best to hang in there and get children in the spirit of the season. The Children’s Department encourages parental involvement and parents are encouraged to read 1000 books to their children before kindergarten. As a teacher with 38 years of experience, I can testify that children who are read-to become readers,  as they unconsciously develop an appreciation for creativity and words. There is a creative backdrop for these 1000 book children to have their pictures made and celebrate the experience with Mom and Dad.  Fun and play  are two words children embrace, and learning is definitely fun here.  Race week-end even brought a special display of race cars. October is a great time for Scooby-Doo  mystery books. Mickey and Minnie Mouse cleverly painted on cardboard bring squeals of delight from the young readers.                   

If this sounds like a lot of decorating and preparation, it is! Most of the innovative decorations are created from cardboard, paint, and lots of talent by Christy. Relatively new on the scene, Christy is extremely talented and uses her talents in this very special place to help your children develop a passion for reading. Word has it that Christy has been dubbed as somewhat of a library mom by her peers. She does all the little extras for the staff  like bringing refreshments for the break room, remembering everyone’s birthday, and going beyond expectations  taking art work home so that it is ready for children to enjoy the next day.  Marilyn, Mandi, Teresa,  and the other ladies in the Children’s Department have years of experience with children’s books and can help you select books that are on or slightly above your child’s reading level.                                   

The B.B. Comer Library Staff is a team, and each person contributes to the great library that we have.  Library director, Tracey Thomas , is quick to tell you that each person is important on this staff. Downstairs, right in front of the Shirley Spears  desk is an interesting display each month that is theme-related to attract the attention of adults. Catherine comes up with the ideas to attract adult readers like ME!  She has done an adult poetry contest, mystery books, travel books, etc., that emphasize the various areas of interest adult readers enjoy. These creative visual displays attract attention to new books that are available, and Catherine knows all about them!                                                                                                     

October at the library is awesome, and as you think of football and full moons, and pumpkins, candied apples, and colorful leaves do not forget the library for inspiration to make fall fun. I love my library and was inspired again to read to a child. It  is all because of my recent trip to B.B. Comer Library; and it was not so long ago at that.