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Monticello Does Anime

The Monticello library in Monticello, Minnesota (part of the Great River Regional Library system), is attracting teens to their library with a great looking anime club.

One of the Monticello Library's newer kids' clubs is luring local adolescents through its doors in droves.

The Anime Club, a Great River Regional Library pilot program, meets once a month to watch an animated film, munch on Japanese candy and bond over a shared interest in a popular cultural sensation that blurs the lines between technology, artistry and cartoonery.

"Anime is geared for children to adults," said GRRL youth services coordinator Heidi Hoks. "It's getting to be a very popular art form. It won a foreign film award at the Academy Awards a few years ago. It isn't just cartoons...

Monticello's club caters to preteens and teenagers, hosting a half-hour meeting for ages 10-12 followed by another for ages 13-18. "

We view a film and the club previews books the library offers," said librarian Deb Lukken, who hosts the club. "They love it."

"It's a place where kids who like anime can hang out," explained Taylor Radike, who was part of Monday's 10- to 12-year-old group.The appeal of anime, club members explained, has to do with its unique combination of art style, action and storytelling.

The club is part of a pilot program launched with the beginning of the school year at three GRRL branches: St. Cloud, Sauk Centre and Monticello.

"It's a way for kids to get together and talk about movies and books," Hoks said. "It's been an extraordinarily positive experience for all the locations, especially Monticello. We were looking for something that would get kids into the library, get them excited about reading, and it seems to be doing that. Kids check out anime materials, and then they check out other materials, too. It's a great way for them to see what's available to them." "

Way to go! Full Monticello Times article here