Wyoming Free Library features ‘Reading Tails’ program

Children can read to a rabbit named Jillian to help improve reading skills.

WYOMING — The Wyoming Free Library welcomed over a dozen children recently to read to a black-and-white rabbit named Jillian on a recent Saturday afternoon.

The program entitled “Reading Tails” is a partnership between the library and the SPCA to be held every month at the library providing a chance for children from four to seven to hone their reading skills and learn about adoptable animals.

Jillian appeared to be quite pleased with the attention she got from the children and even seemed to focus on the youngsters as they read.

Library Director John Roberts said it was a great opportunity for the library to work with the SPCA.

“We like to partner with other organizations. We partner with the CEO for our food distribution,” Roberts said. “We’re branching out to other organizations in Luzerne County.”

Roberts said the in-person use of the library has rebounded since the pandemic has eased.

“All of the programs that we offer are now filled and have a waiting list,” he said.

Ariya Karpinski, 6, Yatesville, woke up the morning of the event and asked her dad, “Do you know what day it is?”

“She was super excited to come,” Keith Karpinski said.

In fact, the young Karpinski was asked what she wanted to be when she grows up, she responded, “a veterinarian.”

The SPCA’s Taryn Talacka, who also serves on the library board, led the children through the event, allowing each one to pick out a book to read to Jillian.

Many of the books were rabbit themed including “The Bunnies Counting Book,” “What Do Bunnies Do All Day” and “Bunnies’ ABC.”

Roberts pointed out that there were a variety of both themes and reading levels, so that the youngsters could be comfortable as they read.

Alyssa Spigarella brought her daughter Ella, 5, to enjoy a time of reading and fun.

“She was really excited,” she said. “She’s even wearing her bunny shoes.”

Ella chose “Brown Bear, Brown Bear,” for her reading choice, emphasizing that she would be reading that book at similar upcoming events.

Like many of the children, Ella enjoyed reading to Jillian, but also enjoyed petting her.

“That was my favorite part,” she said.

Talacka pointed out that Jillian was available for adoption, as were other animals at the SPCA.

But, for those who weren’t quite ready to adopt, there were other helpful options including sponsoring adoptions, donating “no sew” blankets” and even making easy homemade treats for the animals.

And when the children turn 15, they can volunteer, she said.

The event will be held once a month at the library. Next month, children will read to cats and in May, the event will be held outdoors with a puppy.

For more information about the activities and other events to be held at the library, access the library’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/search/top?q=wyoming%20free%20library