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SDSU Extension to Host Second Community-Focused Book Read

February 19, 2021

BROOKINGS, S.D. - Over the last month, the SDSU Extension Community Vitality team has been bringing South Dakotans together virtually for a community book read. After a widely-popular first round with much discussion and debate, the organization will be offering a second statewide book read beginning March 5.

“We had a lively and thoughtful conversation during our first book read that ended with a spontaneous visit from the author of ‘Little Chapel on the River: A Pub, A Town and the Search for What Matters Most.”

— Kari O’Neill, SDSU Extension Community Vitality Program Manager

“With this next book, we anticipate the dialogue to continue, as this is another excellent opportunity for South Dakotans to connect virtually on important community issues of the day.”

“Population: 485- Meeting Your Neighbors One Siren at a Time,” by Michael Perry will be the focus of the March book read and follows Perry’s returns to his small Wisconsin hometown after living in the city. To regain his creditability, he joins the local volunteer fire department, and through fires and rescues and community “smelt feeds,” he explores the history and the community members that make up an often-overlooked area of America.

“This book will continue to highlight our work in placemaking and helping communities envision their future,” says Peggy Schlechter, SDSU Extension Community Vitality Field Specialist. “The story is about characters we probably all recognize in our communities and get to work with in service projects.”

The book read will be held March 5–24 with facilitated discussions every Thursday evening. The sessions will be held over Zoom, which is readily available and free to individuals with internet capabilities. The timeframe will be 7:30 p.m. CST (6:30 p.m. MST), with an hour of interaction. Interested parties should register by March 1 to receive the link to join the discussion. 

There is no registration fee; participants only need to purchase the book in advance of the start date. There will be a cap to the number of participants, with a plan to offer another book read in the fall.

To register, visit the SDSU Extension Community Book Read event page or contact O’Neill; Schlechter; or Joshua Hofer.