A day to bring characters to life - DatelineCarolina

A day to bring characters to life

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Zakiya reading one of her favorite books. Zakiya reading one of her favorite books.
"Boo to You!" by Lois Ehlert. Zakiya's favorite book. "Boo to You!" by Lois Ehlert. Zakiya's favorite book.

Richland Library Southeast celebrates reading every day, but on International Children's Book Day they bring characters to life. Staff members dressed up as different characters from favorite children's books.

Cinderella was there along with the mouse from "If You Give A Mouse A Cookie," Tom Sawyer, and the farmer from "Charlotte's Web."

"It's important that the kids get to walk in and see some of those characters that they see in books and being able to connect them," says Diane Artemus, librarian and Cinderella for the day.

International Children's Book Day is celebrated every year on April 2nd in honor of Hans Christian Andersen's birthday.

Andersen is the author of many classic children's books, like, "The Little Mermaid," "The Ugly Duckling," and "The Emperor's New Clothes."

The library staff believes they can accomplish a bigger goal by bringing characters to life for a day.

"We understand the power of books," says Manager Sarah Maner. "We know that one of the most important things parents can do to help their children succeed in life is read to them early and often from a very young age."

Kisha Great brings her 4-year-old daughter, Zakiya, to the library several times a week.

"The kids look at books and movies and play with toys, it's a great way to learn and socialize," says Great.

"Boo to You!," Zakiya exclaims her favorite book title.  

Zakiya's mom says she has the entire book memorized, even though she can not read. This is a trait Maner says can help a child learn to read faster and develop a love for books.

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