Avilés, BPL president lead bilingual storytime in Sunset Park
Council Member Alexa Avilés and Brooklyn Public Library President and CEO, Linda E. Johnson visited Sunset Park Library yesterday to read to the library’s youngest patrons during a bilingual storytime. “La Hora Magica” (Magic Hour), is a recurring program at the Sunset Park Library, featuring stories and songs in English and Spanish for children up to age 5.
“We are all eagerly awaiting the opening of our new library and new affordable housing project here in Sunset Park,” said Councilmember Alexa Avilés. “It was a joy to spend la hora mágica with Sunset Park families at the interim library space, at one of the busiest library branches in Brooklyn. Libraries are essential public spaces for our communities. We are grateful to have had this interim library space while the new library is built, and I hope to explore ways we can continue to make that space a public community space in the future.”
The group read several books in both languages and sang classic songs like Los Pollitos Dicen. Council Member Aviles, an enthusiastic supporter of libraries, generously provided $500,000 for the opening day collection of the new Sunset Park Library, which is set to open in 2023.
“Helping children to discover the joy of reading is one of the most important roles a public library plays in the community. We are so grateful to Council Member Avilés for reading to our young patrons today at our interim library in the Sunset Park neighborhood and for funding the opening day collection which patrons can enjoy when the new Library opens next year,” said Linda E. Johnson, President and CEO, Brooklyn Public Library.
Since the onset of the pandemic, Brooklyn Public Library’s children’s librarians have held thousands of virtual storytimes, in more than a dozen languages. As restrictions have lifted, “La Hora Magica” is just one of a number of in-person bilingual programs offered by the Brooklyn Public Library. These include interactive programming for young children, as well as literacy classes and English conversation groups for adults.
Sunset Park is home to one of Brooklyn’s busiest libraries. At 21,000 sq ft, the new library, currently under construction, will be nearly twice the size of the previous library, while simultaneously creating 49 new deeply affordable apartments in a pioneering shared-use model building that is the first of its kind in New York City.
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