Storytelling and Arts Center of the Southeast, in partnership with the Scotland County Memorial Library, will bring one of America’s classic storytellers to town next week - in book form.
Beginning Monday, SACS will kick off its “Big Read” by making copies of Mark Twain’s 1876 classic “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” available free of charge in several Laurinburg locations.
In mid-March, SACS and the library will begin to sponsor activities related to the novel, including poetry and poster contests, skits, a scavenger hunt, discussion groups, and reenactments of scenes from the book.
“It’s encompassing a number of areas around the county and a number of different groups to get the community involved in reading,” said library director Leon Gyles. “Anybody can come in and get the books -we have two versions: one for juvenile and one for adult, depending on reading ability.”
Some 2,000 copies will be available at the library, SACS, Laurinburg-Scotland County Area Chamber of Commerce, Scotland County Parks and Recreation, the Scotland County Literacy Council, and the Laurinburg Housing Authority office. The books and activities are funded through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Library and SACS staff selected “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” as a work which will appeal to those of any age and gender.
“We hope that they’ll really enjoy reading the book and that it’s something that we all do together - it should be fun,” said Jan Schmidt, SACS executive director. “In this age of computers and computer gaming and all of those things, it’s kind of nice to go back to sitting together and reading a book and sharing what we think about it and what we’ve learned about it.”
Activites will be held every Wednesday in April at 4:30 p.m. at the library, with weekly Saturday morning readings of the book by Tyris Jones on WLNC. A full schedule of activites is available at the SACS website at storyarts.info, where entry forms for the poetry and poster contests are also available. Web activites related to the book will be posted on the library website at scotlandcounty.org/library.
The contests are divided into two age groups: students in eighth through 12th grades and adult. Submissions with completed entry forms should be sent to SACS at P.O. Box 2154, Laurinburg, NC 28352. Posters may be delivered by hand to the Scotland County Memorial Library, while poems can also be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for entries will be March 31, with winners announced at the kick-off event on April 8.