Reading becomes a winning pastime

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By Maureen Cummings

Hampton Union, August 8, 2003

[The following article is courtesy of the Hampton Union and Seacoast Online.]
Gasperoni Family
Four-year-old Charlie Gasperoni, surrounded by his
family, beams as he shows off the new bike he won as a
grand prize from the Lane Memorial Library children's
reading program. Behind him are parents Kelly and Jeff
Gasperoni and next to him is sister Hannah.
Photo by William Teschek.

HAMPTON - A 4-year-old boy’s face lighted up with delight after he won the grand prize from the children’s reading program at the Lane Memorial Library in Hampton on July 31.

"His face was priceless," said Children’s Librarian Cindy Stosse, describing the reaction of Charlie Gasperoni, of Hampton.

Charlie won a royal blue BMX bicycle after he placed the winning ticket into the treasure chest in the children’s library.

"I put lots of tickets into the basket," the excited young winner said.

He was also wearing what his mom, Kelly Gasperoni, called his lucky Mickey Mouse hat, which he donned during his newspaper interview as well.

Stosse explained that during the six-week summer program, which has now concluded for the younger children, each child places a ticket into the treasure chest for every 30 minutes he or she reads.

More than 250 youngsters participated, logging 1,428 reading hours, said Stosse. "We encourage kids to read 30 minutes a day."

Charlie Gasperoni winning the grand prize bicycle
Charlie Gasperoni accepting the grand prize bicycle from
Children's Librarian Cynthia Stosse
Photo by Joanne Mulready

During the program, Charlie read "Whose Mouse Are You?", "Ready, Set, Go" and "The Berenstain Bears."

"I read lots of stories," he said.

Charlie’s sister, Hannah Gasperoni, 8, expressed pride in her brother for winning. She hoped that he would win rather than her since she already owned a bike.

Stosse said the summer program is sponsored through the Children’s Librarians of New Hampshire, who provide a theme each summer. This year’s theme was "Reading Rocks the Granite State."

The bike was donated by Wal-Mart for the third consecutive year. Stosse said the library requests the bikes in January.

"It’s every kid’s dream," she said.

Stosse said that everyone who attends the program, which comprises 3- to 13-year-olds, wins a door prize, including a few of the adults who bring their children in.

"That’s why the kids are here. It’s nice to give them (the parents) a reward for their work, too."

Some of the prizes included puppets, T-shirts and books donated by Glenda Englebach, of Usborne Books.

Charlie Gasperoni on his new bike

Stosse said the Gasperoni family won T-shirts before its youngest member won the bike.

Announcing the winner is fun for Stosse, too.

"Every year when I pull the name out, it takes me a while to say it. I have to calm myself down before I say who it is. I’m as excited as the winner, especially when it’s someone I know. That’s very special."

Charlie’s mom said, "It was certainly a surprise and a shock when he won the grand prize. It will be a couple of years before it fits Charlie, but he goes out every day and gets on it."


Reading still rocks at the Lane Memorial Library

by Cindy Stosse, Children's Librarian

Reprinted with permission from Atlantic News, August 14, 2003

HAMPTON - The summer reading program at the Lane Memorial Library is winding down, but that does not mean that the children are reading less.

The participants (more than 250) logged in more than 1400 hours of reading, but that seems to be only the beginning. The Children's Room at the library continues to be bustling with readers!

The celebration was held on Thursday, July 31 and the bicycle, donated again by Wal-Mart, was won by Charlie Gasperoni of Hampton. That evening all eyes were on the treasure box as tickets were pulled for the other prizes -- T-shirts, puppets, and books donated by Glenda Englebach of Usborne books.

When it came time for the final drawing, the excited chatter stopped to hear who was the lucky reader that won the "bike." When Charlie's name was called, he was surprised and had to be prodded to the stage by his exuberant sister, Hannah.

The three book groups and the Young Adult movie day are continuing through the first half of August. That is still not the end of reading time at the library! Story times will resume in September with sign-ups starting right after labor Day. Also, the book groups will be continuing! Call the Children's Room at 926-4729 for details.

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