The name of the event, also known simply as “Día,” translates from Spanish into English as Day of Children-Day of Books. The gathering was part of a nationwide campaign to bring families together and emphasize the importance of literacy for every child, regardless of linguistic or cultural background.
“The primary purpose of the event is to let the community know they are all welcome to come to the library for valuable resources and learning opportunities,” Patterson librarian Olga Cardenas said.
Organizers distributed hundreds of new books to attendees while also hosting multiple multicultural performance groups during the outing.
Folkloric dancers, local bands, ukulele fun-strummers and Polynesian dancers littered the outdoor region just outside of the branch library’s entrance throughout the day.
“It’s important to celebrate Día de Los Niños-Día de Los Libros because it is a reflection of our own community,” said Cardenas. “It’s an opportunity to let the community know what kind of groups and cultural aspects we have to offer. The partnerships between these community members and the library could not be possible without their strong support.”
Other resources were also available to offer help and services for many families including the American Red Cross, Covered California and Center for Human Services. According to several supporters, the booths were both informational and diverse, allowing many non-English speaking families a chance to co-mingle and attain services they believed unattainable in Patterson’s community.
Students were just as pleased as their parents with the outcome of the afternoon’s proceedings. Sayeh Guerrero, a sophomore at Patterson High School, has volunteered at the event for the last two years and is exceptionally impressed by the amount of support the event has drawn from the community.
“It’s really fun for the kids,” said Guerrero, “but there are plenty of things for parents and teenagers to do and watch.”
Las Palmas fifth-grader Nataly Reyes said she was immensely impressed by the Polynesian dance routine because of its diverse showmanship, and hopes to join the club as a dance member when she attends Patterson High School.
“I like the event because it teaches us new things,” said Reyes. “If we step ourselves up to something we’ve never done before, it would be a lot more fun.”
Also in attendance was Mayor Luis Molina for the city of Patterson, who mingled with many participants throughout the afternoon. By midafternoon, Mayor Molina proclaimed April 30, 2014, Día de Los Niños-Día de Los Libros throughout Patterson. He ended his speech by presenting certificates of appreciation to librarians Olga Cardenas and Wayne Philbrook, the new Patterson branch manager, for their services.
Contact Brooke Borba at 289-6187, ext. 24, email@example.com.