Monster-themed book fair brings nostalgia, chills for good cause

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Event at this college will donate books to neighborhood elementary schools.

By V. G. Garlisi

sac-ranger@alamo.edu

Ever miss those nostalgic books of youth like “Junie B. Jones,” “Captain Underpants” and the “Goosebumps” series? Well, have no fear, for the Scholastic Book Fair is coming to campus this semester.

The monster-themed book fair will kick off 9 a.m. to noon Sept. 19 in Scobee Education Center. The event will feature astrophysicist and children’s book author Dr. Jeffrey Bennett, who will talk to children about his books and the importance of math and science to developing minds. There will also be learning activities for students during the sessions with Bennett, author of the “Max Science Adventure” series.

The book fair will continue 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sept. 21-23 in the mall. Some featured books will include “The Minions,” the “Goosebumps” series and other monster literature.

The average cost for a book is around $3.95, but buyers will shell out an extra few dollars for hardcover books.

Last April was the first time since 2007 that the college hosted the Scholastic Book Fair. Carrie Hernandez, organizer of the fair and senior student success specialist, brought the fair back in order to benefit schools in downtown San Antonio.

Proceeds from the book fair will help buy books for schools. Hernandez also said shoppers may buy a book and directly donate it to the cause.

Last spring, Hernandez donated over $3,000 in books to Margil Elementary.

“Everyone got a book,” Hernandez said. “We even left some extra books for the teachers to enjoy.”

Hernandez was surprised by the turnout of last year’s event since she was selling elementary-level books on a college campus.

“I was definitely surprised by how many books we sold,” Hernandez said. “But as I think about it, who doesn’t want to buy their child the books they grew up with?”

This fall, Hernandez is partnering with Chaye Pena, senior coordinator for student and academic success, to donate books to San Antonio Youth Literacy’s Second Grade Reading Buddy Program. The program aims to train volunteers to tutor children in schools with the highest need for youth literacy.

“Third grade is the cutoff point for a child to develop good reading skills,” Pena said. “We try and tutor them in the window of time that the children have in second grade so reading will not get progressively harder for them as they advance.”

Hernandez hopes for an even better turnout this year, but says something is always better than nothing, especially when helping children.

“It’s for the children, so no matter what, I know we will do well,” Hernandez said.

For more information, visit the office of student life on the second floor of Loftin Student Center or call 210-486-0125.

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