Teen Read Week, Oct. 14-18, was a very busy week at TSCPL. On Wednesday, we celebrated with the award winning author, Ben Mikaelsen. On Thursday, the teens were challenged with the program, I Survived the Wilderness. Friday, was an educational, fun program, Books & Bites. The teens listened to the teen team talk about popular books and then received the makings for S’mores.
The Ben Mikaelsen author visit was very well attended. Six area schools attended the 10 am session with around 390 people. The 1 pm session had five schools bringing around 390 people. Needless to say the auditorium was packed but the students were very well behaved and attentive. Ben also spoke to 450 students at Washburn Rural Middle School.
Ben Mikaelsen is the author of award winning books such as Touching Spirit Bear, Ghost of Spirit Bear and Petey. Growing up Ben had the misfortune of being bullied. He looked different, his family was very poor and he had learning disabilities. As a child Ben always had ideas in his head but didn’t write them down.That was because he couldn’t spell, had no idea what to do with punctuation or what grammar was all about. It wasn’t until Ben was a freshman in college that his professor recognized Ben was a gifted storyteller. The professor required Ben to have a English tutor his entire freshman year.
Ben lives in Bozeman, Montana. He had the opportunity to raise a North American black bear cub although he doesn’t encourage anyone to own a wild animal. Buffy lived 27 years, weighed 750 pounds as an adult and taught Ben many life lessons such as love, honesty, patience and kindness. Ben shared several pictures of Buffy where he was tipping over the canoe, sharing a moment with a two-year-old and cuddling with Ben. There were smiles, laughter and some tears shared by the audience.