The Vernon Parish Library held a party this past Wednesday to celebrate their participants in the summer reading program.

During the celebration, awards were handed out to several of the children in the summer reading program, based on the amount of books they had read during the program.

The awards were divided based on age groups and how many books the children from that age group read.

For the 3 - 5 year old age group: third place winner was Anthony Lewis, second place winner was a tie between Kiana and Nona Richards and the first place winner was Lake Hayes.

For the first to fourth grade group: the second place winner was Zanyah Walker and first place winner was Aisha Horton.

For the fifth to eighth grade group: the second place winner was Scarlett Spadie and the first place winner was Monique Lord.

For the ninth through 12th grade group, Tiana Franca won first place.

In addition to the reading competition awards, the party held a book mobile competition, which saw Jacob Martinez winning second place and Michael Lane winning first place.

The party had a some very special guests in the form of Brother and Sisters in Arms, a company that specializes in high-quality dog training for Active Duty Military members, Military Veterans, First Responders and special needs dependents.

The group taught the children about how the dogs were specially trained for service, going over their many duties and the role they will play in their owner’s life.

Of course, the children were able to interact with a few of the dogs.

The party provided cakes and treats that were donated by Wal-Mart and Market Basket and of course the park was open for the children to play in during the festivities!

“It’s just been such a huge success,” said Children’s Librarian Kimberly Spadie. “We had a huge turn out this year, about 400 kids, and it’s just been great to have this many and get them all excited about reading.”

The summer reading program still has a few more days left in it, concluding on July 31.

Children can still engage in reading even after the program ends.