NEW BREMEN – Due to the efforts of the New Bremen New Knoxville Rotary Club, the two villages the club serves are the newest sites for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Storybook Trails.
The New Bremen Storybook Trail was dedicated Monday at the Jaycee Park. The New Knoxville version will be completed in its community park in the next few weeks.
Rotary President Tess Elshoff said the club agreed on the Storybook Trail project as a way to give back to the youth of the community.
“As we all know, literacy is one of the foundations to grow a strong community,” Elshoff said. “Children who are excited about literacy can be part of a vibrant community in their future.”
Each Storybook Trail will have 20 aluminum posts, with a plexiglass top, to allow participants to read the pages from the featured book along with activities for the children to do that relate to the story they are reading.
Through a partnership with the local libraries, the books will be changed monthly and are most appropriate for ages pre-K through early elementary.
Elshoff said the placement of the new trail along the canal fit with the village’s plan to expand public use into Jaycee Park, located between Plum and Cherry streets.
“The Jaycee Park also has a new playground and shelter house the children can use once they are done looking at the stories,” she said.
Village employees were involved in the installing and landscaping the project. Funding came from the New Bremen Foundation’s Dianne Komminsk Fund and the State of Ohio Capital Budget, through ODNR.
The cost for the two trails is approximately $13,000, and they have a long-term warranty to replace defective parts. Elshoff emphasized that not a penny of the cost was borne by either village.
More information about the ODNR Storybook Trails can be found at https://ohiodnr.gov/wps/portal/gov/odnr/go-and-do/family-friendly/storybook-trails. Local information can be found on the Rotary’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/NewBremenNewKnoxvilleRotaryClub.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.