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Sports-themed Storybook Festival coming to Fremont April 29

The 18th Annual Storybook Festival returns to Fremont 10 a.m.-1 p.m. on Saturday, April 29, at Fremont Ross High School.

The annual event usually draws about 600 children and their parents each year to celebrate reading through fun and engaging activities. This year’s theme is “SPORTS: Be a Reading FANatic!” and features Cleveland Browns player Gary Barnidge as a celebrity guest reader.

“We try to have a different theme every year,” Deb Meyer, children’s librarian at Clyde Public Library, said. “We’ve had readers in the past, but never anyone involved with professional sports.”

The event is free to enter and includes book giveaways as well as snacks and activities for children. Meyer said the Storybook Festival provides opportunities for children to experience books in unique and entertaining ways that will help them get excited about reading.

“Along with reading, we have a hands-on activities and crafts centered on books to involve children a little more with the stories they read,” Meyer said. “Children sometimes remember stories better when they have activities as part of the experience.”

This year’s Storybook Festival also features children’s book character Amelia Bedelia. Photo opportunities will be available, so visitors are encouraged to bring cameras for pictures. A prize drawing will take place at 11:30 a.m. The drawing includes 12 themed prizes from the Storybook Festival Committee, plus grand prizes provided by Community Health Services. All are eligible to win, but must be present at the drawing to claim prizes. Also included in the event will be book and concessions sales. Additionally, the event will have information about community agencies and resources for parents, families and children.

“Hopefully, everybody walks away with something that will benefit them,” Meyer said.

The Storybook Festival is organized by local agencies and organizations that include Birchard Public Library, Clyde Public Library, Fremont City Schools, Sandusky County Board of Developmental Disabilities, Help Me Grow, WSOS Community Action Commission, and lead event sponsor Paramount Advantage. Many local organizations also support and sponsor the event.