Final installation of San Ramon’s new “StoryWalk®” this week means another creative way for children and their families to enjoy both reading and exercise in a beautiful outdoor setting. Located at San Ramon Central Park, the new project features pages taken directly from a children’s book and displayed on attractive aluminum display stands along a 20-station pathway. As families walk along the path, they read and share the story, step-by-step, page-by-page.
The display stands were funded by the Rotary Club of San Ramon as part of a community partnership between the City of San Ramon Parks and Community Services Department, Contra Costa County Library, the San Ramon Library Foundation and the Rotary Club of San Ramon.
“We are extremely excited to see this project come to completion after months of planning,” said Colette Lay, Past-President of the Rotary Club of San Ramon. “Our Club has a long track record of supporting education in our community, and to be able to partner with the City, County and Library Foundation on a very tangible community project like this was an easy decision.”
StoryWalks combine physical activity and the natural beauty of Central Park, with the experience of reading together as a family. The Central Park StoryWalk® begins near the front entrance of the San Ramon Community Center at Central Park, wraps around the pathway near the play structure, ending at the Community Center’s rear fountain. The last StoryWalk® panel encourages families to visit the library to find more great picture books and continue their reading adventure.
“StoryWalk® is a fun way to bring families together to promote both early literacy and a love for the outdoors,” said Elayne Pedley, San Ramon’s Youth Services Librarian. “Each StoryWalk® book choice will be interesting, well-reviewed stories with quality illustrations.”
Library staff will choose titles for the City of San Ramon’s Library Advisory Committee to consider and approve. Stories will be selected with a focus on great illustrations and subject matter that include at least some of the following concepts: nature/parks, physical activity, literacy, kindness, diversity, family, or humor. Stories will be changed quarterly.
“The San Ramon Library Foundation is proud to be part of this creative project,” said Linda Henika, San Ramon Library Foundation President. “Particularly during this very difficult COVID-19 environment, families are looking for creative ways to venture outdoors while still promoting learning. This accomplishes both.”
The first StoryWalk® book, Daniel Finds a Poem, by Micha Archer, is a simple story with beautiful collage illustrations. The book won the Ezra Jack Keats “new illustrator” award and was an American Library Association notable book in 2017.