Though the Yadkin County Public Library has plenty of books on dinosaurs, it’s not very often there are actual dinosaurs roaming among the shelves. Several of the prehistoric creatures were spotted there on Wednesday, however. Luckily they were of the friendly puppet or animatronic variety and no children or parents were eaten.
As part of its summer reading program, the library played host to Dakota and Friends, a traveling dinosaur show from Concord.
The children got up close and personal with the dinos as their handlers Ed Bounds and Drew Nowlin explained interesting facts about the creatures.
Each summer the library offers a variety of programs to keep children engaged in learning in a fun way while they are out of school.
“It’s so important that children have an opportunity to keep learning, but it’s learning in such a fun way,” said Branch Librarian Malinda Sells. “We want them to continue to read during the summer months. Having funding from Yadkin County United Fund and the Yadkin Cultural Arts Center, we’ve been able to give these great programs.”
Sells called the Dakota and Friends dinosaur program “absolutely fantastic.”
“This has been great,” she said.
Bounds left a sales career three years ago to begin the program as way to engage children and encourage them to learn. Bounds said his inspiration was famed children’s TV personality, puppeteer and educator Fred Rogers, known to many as Mister Rogers.
Throughout the program Bounds and Nowlin asked the children questions about dinosaurs. They also encouraged the children to look up information and learn for themselves, not just take for granted facts told to them by adults.
Bounds said his own father always encouraged him to find out the answers for himself rather than just believe something because he or another adult said it was so.
“I was lucky that I had good parents, good teachers and guys like Fred Rogers who cared about me, it changed my life and so now I get to pass it on to the kids and that’s the most fun,” Bounds said.
Dakota and Friends travels around the state to libraries and fairs. For more information on the group, check out their Facebook page Dakota and Friends.
The Yadkin County Library has several additional summer reading programs scheduled including The Balloon Lady on July 20 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. and a musical concert with Jack and Kitty on July 27 at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.