Library storywalk takes young readers on colorful trek through downtown Dixon

DIXON - Community members exploring the downtown may have noticed the recent arrival of colorful monsters in storefront windows.

They’re part of the “Monsters Love Colors” children’s book by Mike Austin, and those pages are part of a storywalk created by the Dixon Public Library.

The walk begins at the main door of the library at 221 S. Hennepin Ave. and continues at 16 different businesses and organizations downtown.

Story trails are often on posts throughout a park or grassy area, but because the library doesn’t have much for green space, staff decided to incorporate one downtown with the help of businesses sporting the laminated pages in their windows, said Kathleen Schaefer, youth programming coordinator for the library.

“It’s very rewarding to have support from businesses, and it’s a great way for people to visit businesses they may not have known were there,” Schaefer said. “It helps give more exposure, and it’s a fun thing for the family.”

The walk takes about half an hour with small children, and the book will be featured until at least July 4 before being switched out for another.

“It’s a nice way to highlight what we’re doing at the library and the things we have to offer,” she said.

The library partnered with the Dixon Chamber of Commerce and Main Street for the project. The original StoryWalk was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, Vermont, and was developed with the help of Rachel Senechal, formerly of the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Libraries across the U.S. and 13 other countries have adopted the StoryWalk model.

Rachel Rodgers

Rachel Rodgers

Rachel Rodgers joined Sauk Valley Media in 2016 covering local government in Dixon and Lee County.