Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Road Trip Sightseeing: Storybooks Around Every Corner (Well, Almost)!

Of course our road trip itinerary had to include stops at some libraries. We were pleasantly surprised to discover that storybooks and storybook characters are alive and well in the Mid-west - but not just in libraries...

Kansas City, Missouri - Storybook Parking? 
Check out the K.C. Public Library's awesome parking garage!  It is the highlight of the city's library district, situated across from the Central Library.  Each book spine is a 9-by-25-foot rectangle!

Historic St. Louis - Libraries and Pinnochio in a Park!
Loved this old branch library that we drove past.

We found some good St. Louis BBQ for dinner (thanks to my daughter and Yelp) and took it with us to Citygarden Park in downtown St. Louis. It's a fun place to have a picnic - lots of fountains and statues, including Pinocchio! 

I took this photo of the beautiful St. Louis Central Public Library after hours.  So sad we couldn't pop in for a visit!  (Go here for a virtual history tour.)

Fun in a Chicago library - A Storybook Dollhouse!
Downtown Chicago's grand old neoclassical style Public Library, located across from Millennium Park, no longer houses books - it is now the City Cultural Center.

The new Central Library is the impressive post-modernist style Harold Washington Library...

There is a beautiful winter garden on the 9th floor, but we only had time to check out the children's library with my grandson.

We discovered a fun Storybook Dollhouse, full of tiny characters, animals, and objects - clues to over 75 children's books, poems, and nursery rhymes!  If you're ever traveling through Chicago with children, make a quick rest stop at the library and play a fun game of "I Spy".  Here were some of our favorites...
See the shadow in the bureau drawer?

Who's this Crocodile in the tub?

See the Giant Peach? Collie? Wanted Poster of a "Dirty Dog"?

Recognize this bear in the yellow hat?  How about that Little Lamb?

Dorothy and Toto in Lincoln Park, IL?
Yes, along with the Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, and Cowardly Lion. Where?  At Oz Park, of course!

Children's Library in Highland Park, IL - Storybooks and...Hampsters!
My daughter took some fun pictures of the inside the wonderful Highland Park Public Library (near her new home) for me when she visited the children's area with my grandson.

The library even has little hamster friends for the kids named "Yankee Doodle" and "Dandy".
Hope you enjoyed this little tour - get out there and explore libraries (you might be surprised at what you find along the way!)