201020-A-LS252-008.jpegA new program allows parents and children to read a book while walking around Patriots Park. ‘This is our first time doing them around Patriots Park,’ said Kristen Inman with the post library. ‘One story is going clockwise, the other counter clockwise.’ ( Photo by Josie Carlson)

By Josie Carlson                                                                                                                                                                                                 Fort Jackson Leader

Residents of Fort Jackson may see some surprising new additions to their walk around Patriot Park throughout October. If they take the time to stop and look, they’ll see they’re in the middle of one of two stories that line the path: “Over in the Forest: Come and Take a Peak” and “The Day of the Dead (El Dia del los Muertos) a bilingual celebration.” These books are presented by Thomas J. Hill Post Library along with the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation’s Outdoor Recreation as part of the StoryWalk® Project.

The project, founded in 2007 by Anne Ferguson, is a way, for children and their parents to read and be active at the same time.

“I wanted to create something where the parents had to be as active as the children,” Ferguson said on the Kellogg-Hubbard Library website.

Laminated pages from a children's book are attached to wooden stakes, which are installed along an outdoor path. As parents and children walk down the trail, they’re directed to the next page in the story.

Ferguson said, the project has always been about promoting early literacy, physical activity, and family time together in nature.

Kristen Inman, a librarian with the Fort Jackson library, said of the two stories, “This is our first time doing them around Patriot Park. One story is going clockwise, the other counter clockwise. The first story, ‘Over in the Forest’ is a counting story…the other story ‘Day of the Dead’ is a bilingual book in English and Spanish…we did that for Hispanic Heritage Month and also because Day of the Dead is celebrated Nov. 1.”

Inman said there are plans to continue placing stories at Patriot Park quarterly for three weeks each.

According to the Kellogg-Hubbard Library, the project has been used in 50 states and 12 countries including, Germany, Canada, England, Bermuda, Russia, Malaysia, Pakistan and South Korea.