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Tiny bookshelves boost library early literacy programs

South Boston News
Francesa Potenza, a fifth-grade student at South Boston Elementary, illustrated her shelf with art from “Fire Star,” one of her favorite books. Her dad purchased the miniature furniture piece. / December 04, 2017
Some 40 guests turned out at the South Boston Library Friday night to take part in a silent auction for 12 miniature bookshelves, each decorated and illustrated by local artists with designs inspired by children’s works of literature.

The event netted $1,200 for each local library branch, in South Boston and Halifax, to support their early literacy programs for children.

Guests not only placed bids on the shelves, they also enjoyed delicious appetizers — sandwiches and desserts made by Windmill Bakery and served along with wine and hard cider.

Much of the fun came in meeting the illustrators of shelves, each of whom drew inspiration from beloved children’s books such as Madeleine L’Engle’s “A Wrinkle In Time” and the Harry Potter series.

Each illustrator told guests why he or she had picked a particular book to focus on, often providing a critique of the story.

Denise Hudson said she chose “Charlotte‘s Web” since she and her husband run a farm and deal with pigs and other animals.

Ray Martin of Greensboro said he enjoyed illustrating “Uncle Elephant” because he had enjoyed sharing the book with his nephew.

Sam Knapp illustrated the “Harry Potter” shelf because he had loved reading the series of Potter books.

After the event began at 6 p.m. guests had until 7 p.m. to study all the little bookshelves and to write their bids on scorecards which were placed by each shelf.

In addition to the food and auction, six door prizes were presented to members of the audience who took part in the second annual library fund raiser.

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