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A different kind of story time

Community leaders tell children’s tales at Morris public library

MORRIS – Stepping in blueberries or mud with your brand-new white shoes could ruin your day. But Pete the Cat took it all in stride, as he learned to love his new blue shoes and new brown shoes.

Joe Zweeres, principal at Saratoga Elementary School, read to students at the Morris Area Public Library on Tuesday as part of the library’s summertime program “Today’s Readers are Tomorrow’s Leaders.”

Zweeres said he appreciate the invitation to read at the program.

“This library does a lot of things,” he said. “A lot of awesome things.

The first book Zweeres read was “Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes.” The story follows Pete the Cat as he goes through his day, but he befalls a series of misfortunes that stain his shoes different colors. Pete, however, is not just a cat but also an optimist and he loves each different color his shoes change.

In the end, Pete steps in a bucket of water that cleans his shoes, bringing them back to their original white.

Zweeres told the students it was a lesson: Even adults have bad things happen to them, and they want to give up, he said – but that’s not how to handle problems.

“When bad things happen, you keep going forward and things will get better,” he said.

The idea for the program, which brings in prominent members of the community to read to kids, came from adult and teen program coordinator Nydia Robinson, said Matt Knott, the youth services coordinator at the library.

The idea was to add another story time to the library in the summer.

Readers include Eric Fisher of We Care of Grundy County and Morris Mayor Dick Kopczick.

The story time lasted about 30 minutes, and included a musical number where everyone got to shake bells and sing songs.

Zweeres, true to his profession, read several stories about school. One described the consequences of bringing an alligator to school for show and tell. (Moral of the story: It’s best to leave him at home and bring a hollow stick instead.)

The last story, “Crazy Hair Day,” told the story of Stanley Birdbaum who mixed up crazy hair day with school picture day.

The next reading event is Tuesday, June 19, at the library.

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