Hearing stories and jumping around with her friends is what four-year-old Evelyn Edwards loves about the Pace library’s story time. Libraries nationwide celebrate February as Love Your Library Month.

“I like to shake my sillies out!” she said.

Story time began with a fun song that engaged the kids, aged three to five, as they jumped their jiggles out, shook their sillies out, and yawned their sleepies out.

Then they sat quietly while Melodie Taylor, Pace branch librarian, read two stories about hibernating bears. More songs, wiggles and giggles finished up the special session.

The singing, movement and poems help engage the children physically and mentally so they’re ready to listen. In her five years as librarian, Taylor has enjoyed watching youngsters come in and grow with the program. Some kids she’s read to for years are now asking for her help to find books they can read themselves. That’s what the program is all about.

“It’s important for kids at a young age to explore,” Taylor said. “I love the enthusiasm the kids have. I love the spontaneity. They’re what make it worth it.”

While the kids hung on Taylor’s every word, their parents browsed for books nearby. Evelyn’s mom, Laura Edwards, selected a stack of children’s books Evelyn might like.

“I really like how they have almost a curriculum, because they do songs and books,” she said. “And keep the little ones moving!”

Story time for three to five year olds able to attend without a caregiver are held at the following times through the end of February (call your local library about events in March): 11 a.m. Monday (Jay Library), 11 a.m. Tuesday (Navarre Library), 11:15 a.m. Wednesday (Milton and Gulf Breeze libraries), 11 a.m. Friday (Pace Library).

Other upcoming events at Santa Rosa County libraries include a celebration of Dr. Seuss’ birthday from 10-11 a.m. Saturday, March 1 at the Pace Library; Genealogy Research Assistance at the Milton Library Mondays 9 a.m. to noon, Tuesdays, 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. and at Navarre Library Thursdays, 9 a.m. to noon;  Hopeful Hearts bereavement support group, Navarre Library, Fridays, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.; Hospice Hour, Navarre Library, Feb. 26, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. (How hospice services work and types of services provided in area); and the Friends of the Pace Library Spring Book Sale, Feb. 27 to March 1 (Feb. 28 and March 1 is open to public, Feb. 27 is educators and Friends of the library only, First United Methodist Church of Pace, 4540 Chumuckla Highway). Call 981-7323 (READ) for additional information.

Proceeds from the Friends of the Pace Library Spring Book Sale finance summer reading programs and other children’s and community programs. Last year’s sale raised $11,000.