Summer Literacy on the Peninsula is series of FOUR free outdoor events sponsored by Saanich Peninsula Literacy in partnership with Vancouver Raise-a-Reader, Decoda, The Municipality of North Saanich, The Municipality of Central Saanich, Peninsula “1000 X 5” Children’s Book Recycling Project, Sidney / North Saanich Library, SD#63, McTavish Academy of Art, Greater Victoria Public Library, and the Victoria Therapeutic Riding Association.

Everyone is welcome to check out these events throughout the summer. All events will adhere to the current PHO guidelines. See the schedule below to plan out your summer fun!

Words in the Wind: July 6-13th
Dominion Brook Park

Take a stroll through Dominion Brook Park in North Saanich this week during park hours, and search for colourful letters that will be hanging from trees and combine to create a secret phrase.  Individual letters created by McTavish Academy of Art and painted by McTavish afterschool care students and Shoal Centre participants are located throughout the park.  A map of the park area will be located on site.

Your mission is to work together with your family to unscramble the 25 letters to create a 6-word phrase.  Once you’ve decoded the phrase, email your entry and a photo to smsleight@gmail.com with Words in the Wind as the subject line.  All successful entries will be placed in a draw to win a prize bag filled with great prizes like a gift certificate to Tanner Books, a McTavish Academy of Arts art kit!

Story Stones: Tell the Tale: July 19-26th
Sidney / North Saanich Library

Create your own Story Stones with a thoughtfully curated kit that you can pick up at the Sidney/North Saanich Library during business hours.  100 Story Stone kits will be made available during business hours the week of July 19-26th.  We would love to see your completed story stone creations.  Send a picture to sidney@virl.bc.ca, or bring your stone to the library and we’ll take a picture for our online gallery and to share on the Saanich Peninsula Literacy Facebook Page.  You’ll even get a special surprise!

Want to take it one step further? Write a short story, poem or song inspired by your stones! Work on it alone, with your family or with a friend. Send it to sidney@virl.bc.ca or put a paper copy in our “Story Stones: Tell the Tale” box at the Sidney/North Saanich Library for a chance to win a gift certificate for Island Blue and some other goodies! Please make sure you include your name, age and a way to get in touch with you by August 16th.

Head Outside and READ Together: August 5th
Pioneer Park

Pack a picnic lunch, grab your blanket and head over to Pioneer Park in Central Saanich to pick up a FREE bag of books and enjoy a self-guided StoryWalk® between 10-12pm. A StoryWalk® is an innovative way for families to enjoy stories in the great outdoors. Pages from a children’s book are attached to wooden stakes along a path outdoors. As you stroll down the trail, you’ll go from page to page, enjoying the story along with a walk in nature.

Book bags for all ages (baby to adult) will be provided by the Peninsula 1000 X 5 Book Recycling Project and Saanich Peninsula Literacy.  The Greater Victoria Public Library will have the StoryWalk® set up betwen 10-2pm.

StoryWalk®with the Horses: August 26th
Centennial Park

Follow the trail at Centennial Park in Central Saanich and read along with each page of the self-guided StoryWalk® story, If I Had a Horse by Gianna Marino.  A StoryWalk® is an innovative way for families to enjoy stories in the great outdoors. Pages from a children’s book are attached to wooden stakes along a path outdoors. As you stroll down the trail, you’ll go from page to page, enjoying the story along with a walk in nature. When you get to the end of the story, Cisco and Bangsi, two local horses from the Victoria Therapeutic Riding Association (VTRA) will be waiting to meet and greet you!  If you’ve ever wanted to get up close with a horse, now is your chance. VTRA volunteers will be on hand to answer all your questions and share upcoming program information. Enter the draw prize including some great prizes like a gift certificate to Tanner Books and a copy of the StoryWalk® book!

The StoryWalk® trail begins directly behind the field house and runs from 10-4pm.  Horse visits will be located at the end of the StoryWalk® trail and on a first come, first serve basis between 10-12pm & 2-4pm.