Aug. 26, 2003 – Reading paid off in more ways than one for 118 youngsters enrolled in the Enid M. Baa Library's 2nd annual summer program.
At an awards party held on Aug. 16 in the library children's reading room, 97 young people collected $20 Dockside Bookshop gift certificates for reading and submitting written reports on more than 12 books over their summer vacation. Another 21 received $10 certificates for completing between six and 12 books.
A total of 286 youngsters, ranging in age from a mere 2 years to 18, signed up for this summer's reading program, sponsored by the Friends of the St. Thomas Public Libraries and the V.I. government's Division of Libraries. Funding was provided by the J. Epstein Foundation for Enhanced Education. Not all of those taking part met the goal for gift certificates, but every youngster did read some books over the summer.
There were 105 participants ages 2-6, 122 ages 7-10, 48 ages 11-14 and 11 ages 14-18. Every public school on St. Thomas was represented except for Bertha C. Boschulte Middle School, and "most of the private schools," according to information from the Friends of the Libraries.
Judy King-Edmeade, coordinator for the "Summer Reading Train" program, said she was impressed by "the great job that the students did in reading hundreds of books over the summer."
King-Edmeade, a member of the Friends of the Libraries board, teaches science at Addelita Cancryn Junior High School. She also is familiar to many youngsters as one of the homework resource persons on the WTJX-TV program "The Teacher Is In" during the school year.
"Many camp programs brought their students into the library every week to join the program," the information from the Friends stated, and "even children visiting from the mainland participated."
At the awards festivities, several participants described their favorite books. The younger children wore "train conductor" hats donated by Mike's Paint Store and clutched their "train whistles."
King-Edmeade and Friends board members Gwen Blyden and J.J. Estemac handed out the bookstore gift certificates along with commemorative T-shirts donated by Billy Dee's Special T's. Program volunteer Basil Bussue read his own poem about "finding the library."
One Friends volunteer commented that "the books purchased last year with a grant from Chase Bank have really improved the quality of the selections for the kids." But, the individual added, "now something needs to be done to improve the Young Adults collection upstairs."
The J. Epstein Foundation donated $5,000 for this year's summer program and has signed on as a continuing sponsor. Other community supporters included Dockside, which made the gift certificates available at a 10 percent discount; Inner Wheel, which donated money for a new revolving display rack in the children's reading room; and FirstBank, which donated money for two new tables for the room.
According to the Friends group, the youngsters were to select their reading materials from library bookshelves but also could include required reading assignments from school.
The teen-agers often chose other books "that interest them more than what is available at the library," one Friends member said. About $800 that was left over from the summer program will be used to purchase more books for the library's Young Adults section, she said, "and the students who participated in the Summer Reading Train will participate in the selection of the new books."
$20 book certificate recipients
Peter Jean Baptiste
Pamela La Place
Aaron Shelford Jr.
Ages 7-10, with schools:Krythemer Edmead (Ulla Muller)
Jendayi Edmeade (Calvary)
Oneiqua Forde (Michael J. Kirwan)
Kyle Gonsalves (Antilles)
D'Mari Creque (Prophecy)
Coral Carfera (Sts. Peter and Paul)
Tiffany James (Lockhart)
Dane Jensen (Calvert Home School)
Jacqueal Kennings (Sts. Peter and Paul)
Khanya Charleswell (Ridgewood in Orlando, Florida)
Renee Carty (Michael J. Kirwan)
Zhene Creque (Prophecy)
Adonte Donastorg (Calvary)
Johanan Edmeade (Calvary)
Brianna Hairston (All Saints)
Angelique Hughes (Ulla Muller)
Trevon Julius (Ulla Muller)
Amanda Ledee (All Saints)
Rhajeem Lewis (Lockhart)
Latisha Martin (Leonard Dober)
Taniesha Mauvais (Prophecy)
Chalicia Nicholas (Seventh-day Adventist)
Natalie Perpie (E. Benjamin Oliver)
Nakiesha Petersen (Calvary)
Sandi Samuel (Lockhart)
Leonard Smith (Lockhart)
Keri Thomas (Joseph Gomez)
T.J. Thompson (Jane E. Tuitt)
Byron Todman Jr. (E. Benjamin Oliver)
Jada Turbe (Moravian)
Dijan VanHolten (Nisky Moravian)
Gergory Venzen (Peace Corps)
Sarah Wheeler (Montessori)
Niyika McFarlane (Wesleyan)
Ages 11-14, with schools:
Diane Benjamin (E. Benjamin Oliver)
James Coffett (Antilles)
Kayalyn Edmeade (Calvary)
Liana Fahie (All Saints)
Janaele Gottlieb (Sts. Peter and Paul)
Akoya Hyndman (Nisky Moravian)
Marissa Mussenden (Moravian)
Meglana Ortiz (Addelita Cancryn)Shauna Gaye Page (Addelita Cancryn)
LeShay Peters (Calvary)
Shabre Smith (Cancryn)
Ulanda Thomas (New Horizons)
Jessica Gonsalves (Antilles)
Ages 14-18, with schools:
Le'Nish Allen (Charlotte Amalie)
Helen Solomon Auburn
Sofy Solomon Auburn
$10 book certificate recipients
Ages 7-10, with schools:
Naiilah Barry (Calvary)
Udellon Buchanan (J. Antonio Jarvis)
Shenell Carty (Michael J. Kirwan)
Crystal Douglas (Ulla Muller)
Diamondique Durant (Seventh-day Adventist)
Rahkeem George (Prophecy)
Rellise Henry (Edith Williams)
Gabriel Joseph (Seventh-day Adventist)
Shannon Lewis (Lockhart)
Jema Mussenden (Moravian)
Lacoya Roberts (Joseph Gomez)
Jalana Turbe (Moravian)
Elia Willie (Joseph Sibilly)
Ages 11-14, with schools:
Calicia Clifton (Calvary)
Coretta Clifton (Calvary)
Abigail Hyndman (All Saints)
Shaquaille Joseph (Addelita Cancryn)
Kareem Hull (Addelita Cancryn)
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