Sippo Lake Park story walk set to open Saturday – Canton Repository

A permanent Trail Tales story walk will open Saturday at Stark Library's Perry Sippo Branch and Stark Parks' Exploration Gateway. Here Jared Shive with Stark Parks and June Kucalaba with Stark County District Library talk about the effort.

PERRY TWP. – Stark County families can explore nature and read stories thanks to the newest addition to Sippo Lake Park. 

A permanent Trail Tales story walk will open Saturday at Stark Library’s Perry Sippo Branch and Stark Parks’ Exploration Gateway. The grand opening will take place from 10 a.m. to noon and offer food and activities. 

The story walk features pages of a deconstructed children’s book displayed at markers throughout the trail. Children and families can follow the story as they venture along the trail. 

It is a joint effort between Stark Library and Stark Parks. 

“We really want to bring the partnership together and bring reading to kids who might not otherwise pick up a book,” Stark Library Communications Director Stephanie Cargill said. 

Stark Library received a $38,000 American Rescue Plan grant to establish the trail. 

What is the story walk at Sippo Lake Park?

Cargill said the library has wanted to put a permanent story walk for years. North Canton Public Library had installed a StoryWalk at Dogwood Park in the spring.

“We are great partners (with Stark Parks),” Cargill said. “Obviously we share a building out of Sippo Lake, and we do programming together all the time. We had some grant funds available to us through the state of Ohio and thought, ‘Wow, we could maybe get this.'” 

The story walk is on the trail between the playground and Exploration Gateway. It includes 20 installations that each contain book pages, along with different activities created by Stark Library or Stark Parks staff that correlate with the story. 

“Some of them are just physical activities like ‘Jump up and down like the character in this book did’ or ‘Look around and see what you see when you’re reading this story. Other things are identifying creatures,'” Cargill said.  

Amanda Perry, education programmer with Stark Parks, said the stories on display will be geared toward elementary-level readers and will change periodically. The first book will be “There’s a Hole in the Log at the Bottom of the Lake” by Loren Long. 

Perry said the story walk will have Braille plates so blind and visually impaired individuals can engage with it. Stark Library and Stark Parks are working with a Cincinnati-based organization to make these plates. 

“We’re hoping that all ages, all abilities will be able to take advantage of this and get out in the parks,” she said. 

Cargill said it’s exciting to see the story walk finally come to fruition. 

“Kids learn better when they’re active,” she said. “That’s proven by many, many studies. And they can be active and going from each page to the next and feel like they’re really in the story.” 

Amber Anderson, children's librarian, reads during summer story time inside the Massillon Public Library Children’s Department.

Summer reading programs in Stark County

Here’s a sampling of some summer reading programs in Stark County: 

North Canton Public Library

The library will offer summer reading programs for all ages through July 30. 

  • Children ages two through sixth grade will earn a ticket for every hour they read and will be entered for a chance to win prizes. Winners will be selected after July 30.

The library has a community goal of 250,000 minutes of children’s reading. If the community reaches the goal, Friends of the Library, the Rotary Club of North Canton and Daystar Autosphere will donate $1,750 to both the North Canton Cares Pantry and the Stark County Pet Food Pantry. 

  • Middle schoolers and teens entering grades six through 12 will receive a scratch off ticket for every book they finish for a chance to win prizes, such as candy, gift cards and ice cream coupons. Middle school level, YA and adult books, fiction and nonfiction, e-books, audiobooks and graphic novels qualify.

Readers will also receive an entry for a grand prize drawing of a Nintendo Switch, $190 in gift cards to local stores or a Kindle 7 Fire for every book they read. 

  • Adults can earn entries for grand prize baskets for each book they read. 

For more information, contact North Canton Public Library at (330) 499-4712. 

Rodman Public Library

Rodman’s summer reading program runs through July 30 for all ages. 

  • Children ages 12 and under will receive a treasure map. They will color in a circle on the map for every 15 minutes of reading. After they fill in 24 circles, or six hours of reading, they can bring the map to the library to earn a raffle entry for one of 10 prizes, including gifts, a playset, karaoke system, Lego set, Kindle and scooter. 
  • Children ages 12 to 18 will earn entries for grand prizes and a summer reading-themed prize for every 20 hours they read and record on a reading log. The grand prize drawings will include a Nintendo Switch, a $50 Amazon gift card or a $50 GameStop gift card.
  •  Adults who sign up for summer reading in person will receive one entry for a weekly drawing of a bag filled with goodies, including a $25 Amazon gift card for any checkout transaction of library items. 

Tickets from one week will not be added to the next week’s drawing. They will be entered into a grand prize drawing for a $100 Amazon gift card instead.

Adults who register in the program online will receive one ticket for a weekly drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card for every book they read. The online program will also have its own grand prize drawing for a $100 Amazon gift card.

For more information, call (330) 821-2665

Massillon Public Library 

Massillonwill kick off its summer reading program on June 6 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the main library’s auditorium with a children’s event. Children as old as entering sixth grade can stop by to pick up a reading log, play games, make a craft, adopt a stuffed animal and learn about this year’s summer reading programs. 

Ramsey Gemmell, 3, of Perry Township, keeps his eye on the book during summer story time at the Massillon Public Library.
Amber Anderson, children's librarian, reads during summer story time at the Massillon Public Library Children's Department.

Programs, contests and activities will be available for all ages this summer, both online and in person at all branches. Summer reading runs through July 30. 

For more information, contact Massillon Public Library at (330) 832-9831. 

Reach Paige at 330-580-8577 or, or on Twitter at @paigembenn.

A permanent Trail Tales story walk will open Saturday at Stark Library's Perry Sippo Branch and Stark Parks' Exploration Gateway. Pictured here are Amanda Perry with the library, Jared Shive with Stark Parks, June Kucalaba with the library, David Green of Stark Parks and Stephanie Cargill, Claire Cross and Julia Shaheen with the district library.

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