By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Jun 14, 2021 at 9:02 AM

While in-person browsing is back at Milwaukee Public Library branches, in-person events are still off the table. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t virtual and other fun, too.

For example. Children's librarian Elizabeth Braithwaite at the East Library has organized a Library StoryWalk on Downer Avenue during the month of June.

Created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, Vermont, with the assistance of Kellogg-Hubbard Library’s Rachel Senechal, a StoryWalk is an outdoor “trail” of signs – perhaps in a park, along a walking trail or a shopping street – that combine to tell a story. Families can then follow the path of signs to share the story together.

The Downer Avemue StoryWalk comprises signs in the windows of 17 participating businesses along Downer Avenue, starting at Boswell Book Company on the corner of Webster Place and concluding at Cafe Hollander on Belleview/Hackett.

The featured story if “Saturday,” by Rhode Island-based illustrator and author Oge Mora, winner of the Caldecott Honor and Coretta Scott King John Steptoe Award.

The book is a celebration of time spent together by a mother and daughter.

Here is a complete list, in order, of the participating businesses:

  • Boswell Book Company
  • Optix on Downer
  • Salon Nova
  • Pizza Man
  • Athletico Physical Therapy
  • 2621 N. Downer Ave. (two signs)
  • BelAir Cantina
  • Sendik’s on Downer (two signs)
  • Stone Creek Coffee
  • F45 Training
  • Breadsmith
  • Downer’s Cleaners
  • Robert Laurence Hair Studio
  • Rohr Jewelers
  • Cafe Hollander

The StoryWalk signs will be up through June 30.

For information on other events and programsm at Milwaukee Public Library, visit mpl.org/services/events.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.