Stowell Elementary School’s annual chili supper is always a popular South Side event, and this year the families attending had an added bonus. After they shared chili, vegetable soup, sandwiches, cake and other goodies, they saw a program to kick off this year’s “one school, one book” project. Fourth-grader Jacob Chapman was among the actors.
Today, Oct. 12, 225 free copies of this year’s book, “The Mouse and the Motorcycle,” will be given to the families of the students. “We will hand out 225 books,” said Stowell Principal J.D. Foust. They will go to “every family in the South Side community.”
The reading project “raises community unity,” Foust added. Along with the book, families will receive easy activities to do with it.
Last school year, the school began this project with the book “Winn Dixie,” which was a huge success, Foust said, “so the school planned another community-wide book this year.
“Our chili supper draws the entire community to the school,” said Foust, so the school decided to kick off the book project that night.
Several Stowell students were helping at the chili supper. Fourth grader Pilar Camargo was wearing a big white chef hat labeled “Chef Pilar” as she passed our crackers. She had volunteered to serve, Pilar said. Her favorite chili supper food was the hot dogs.
Pilar was accompanied by four siblings. Madalyne Yahne, 10, especially enjoyed the chili. Rosa Camargo, 8, loved the lemonade, while her sister Sofia Camargo, 4, liked the peanut butter sandwiches and cake. Their brother, Logan Yahne, at age 1 could not say what he liked but his mom said he liked the peanut butter.
Corrie Hinds, another fourth grader, was busy filling the cracker bowl as the families in line were served.
At the ticket table, Lori Cox reported “we are having a great turnout. ... We have been very busy since we started selling tickets at 4:30.” Her daughter, fourth-grader Bailee Zinn, had already eaten and chose the chili as her favorite.
Also selling tickets was Phyllis Nelson, while second-grader Kelbe Nelson ate nachos and cheese.
Stowell music teacher Amanda Sims was taking orders for Stowell T-shirts at another table.
Some families brought several generations. One four-generation family included 6-month-old Kolby Haynes. With him were his dad, Dustin Haynes, his grandmother, Melissa Haynes, and his great-grandfather, Danny Jeffries.
Michele Travao and her children, second-grader Jason and sixth-grader Janessa Travao, were accompanied by their Aunt Christina Cannella, who declared, “I love my nephew and niece more than life itself.”
For more pictures, see the Seen on Scene photo gallery on hannibal.net.