Mihaela Floarea enjoys this week’s Story Walk. Soranne Floarea/ The Free Press

Stories decorate city pathways for new reading initiative

The Fernie Women’s Resource Centre began the initiative in support of the local early years community

Encouraging kids to read while enjoying the great outdoors, the Fernie Women’s Resource Centre (FWRC) set up a Summer Stories Around Town initiative in partnership with the Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (CBAL).

Running from July 15 until September 2, pages from various children’s books will be posted along changing pathways throughout Fernie and Sparwood. Stories are placed each Wednesday, and remain up for a week. Encouraging inclusion and participation from the Elk Valley’s French community, the books are also translated into French by Maylis Destremau from L’association Francophone des Rocheuses du Sud (AFRoS) Fernie.

Adorning the yard in front of Fernie city hall this week was the colourful story, All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold and Suzanne Kaufman. In Sparwood, Silly Sally by Audrey Wood animated Titan Park. Featured in previous weeks was The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister, with past locations including The Arts Station, and the Sparwood Splash Park.

Coinciding with the stories are Take and Make packages, containing a craft or activity relating to each story. The packages offer families activities they can do at home, as gathering in large groups is still restricted. Each package includes a granola bar for the children, a tea bag for adults, and an information sheet to give parents exciting activity ideas. In previous weeks, the packages have included supplies to create a variety of signs, as well as chalk to draw self portraits on driveways. Packages are available for collection on Wednesday afternoons, either at the car park next to Fernie’s CBAL office or at the Sparwood Public Library.

Participants in Summer Stories Around Town are eligible to win weekly prizes by posting a photo at the Story Walk or of their Take and Make creation via Facebook or Instagram, using the hashtags #SummerStoriesAroundTown or #StoryWalkElkValley.

“The CBAL team went to a Decoda conference in Vancouver earlier this year, before COVID-19, and there was a session on the Story Walk project,” said Andy Coe, facilitator for FWRC. “When we realized we wouldn’t be able to run our regular summer program, Mountain Kids in the Park, the CBAL staff proposed a Story Walk and I suggested Take and Make activity packages for families to have something to take and do at home. Then we would be able to provide the proper safe distancing needed while still providing support.”

Announcements with new locations and stories can be found on the event’s Facebook page, as well as via posters put up throughout Fernie and Sparwood.

Those participating in the Story Walks are asked to safely distance at each location, staying on designated paths and refraining from touching the posts. Coe also reminds the public that all three organizations involved in the initiative are still open and available to offer safe support for those in need.

To contact AFRoS, email them at francofernie@gmail.com. CBAL can be reached at elkvalleycoordinator@cbal.org, and the FWRC via fwrc@shaw.ca.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


The Take and Make packages are free for all participants. Photo Submitted

Just Posted

WildSafeBC hosts wildlife safety clinic

The event taught locals how to be bear safe while out in the backcountry

Stag Leap sprints into summer programming

Fernie’s Stag Leap Running Co. encourages participation in virtual races and their Thursday Run Club

July Kootenay real estate sales at record high

Sales and prices of Kootenay real estate on the rise

The International Snow Science Workshop goes virtual

The livestreamed event will include speaker sessions, poster presentations, and panel discussions

Twlefth annual Columbia Basin Culture Tour showcases local artists

Artists from throughout the Elk Valley will be participating in the event August 8 and 9

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

Moving on: Tanev scores 11 seconds into OT as Canucks oust Wild

Vancouver beats Minnesota 5-4 to move into first round of NHL playoffs

Gene editing debate takes root with organic broccoli, new UBC research shows

Broccoli is one of the best-known vegetables with origins in this scientific haze

VIDEO: U.S. Air Force pilot does fly-by for B.C. son amid COVID border separation

Sky-high father-son visit plays out over White Rock Pier

3 Vancouver police officers test positive for COVID after responding to large party

Union president says other officers are self-isolating due to possible exposure

New mothers with COVID-19 should still breastfeed: Canada’s top doctor

Dr. Theresa Tam made the recommendation during World Breastfeeding Awareness Week

Collapse of Nunavut ice shelf ‘like losing a good friend:’ glaciologist

The ice shelf on the northwestern edge of Ellesmere Island has shrunk 43 per cent

B.C. wildfire crews have battled 111 blazes in the last seven days

Twenty-nine fires remain active, as of Friday (Aug 7)

B.C. group renews call for protection of newly discovered glass sponge reefs

DFO says public consultation will play heavy role in future protection measures

Most Read