Despite some vandalism, Storybook Village and Alphabet Garden at Qualicum Beach Elementary are now open.
The mini-scale village where kids can pedal little cars around the Safety Circle roads to visit the post office, fire hall or other child-size buildings, or work in the Alphabet Garden, is open daily from 10 a.m. to noon until Aug. 14.
The facility will remain at the prime downtown location indefinitely as part of a recent school district announcement that the closed school will remain as a family oriented mixed use facility in cooperation with the Society of Organized Services and Town of Qualicum Beach.
Judi Malcolm has been hired as the new BLT manager, but in the interim District 69 acting assistant superintendent Gillian Wilson spoke to The NEWS, explaining they have had at least two incidents of serious vandalism recently, including one during the day.
She said the police are investigating and have taken finger prints, but there is no word on suspects.
Despite that, Wilson said the community partners are really coming together to get the children’s attraction going for its fifth summer.
The village includes road signs, traffic lights and paved roads that kids can pedal around to buildings including a store, gas station, bank, hospital, theatre and schoolhouse.
While the other Building Learning Together programs are now closed for the summer, starting this week Munchkinland at Family Place is open for a special Regional District of Nanaimo sponsored Mondays from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. for children under six.
The district welcomed Malcolm to her new role as of June 23. She has been the assistant director of the Bethlehem Retreat Centre in Nanaimo, coordinator for Forest Circle Child Care/Forest Circle Society for Families in Campbell River and the Student Child Care Coordinator for North Island College’s pilot project.
Check www.oblt.ca for more on Building Learning Together.