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Worlds Of Wonder Comes To Town

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“Worlds of Wonder,” the first mobile library for Tuolumne County is coming home today!

Mike and Lori Jones, who through Sonora 49’er Rotary have driven the vehicle from Greensboro, North Carolina across the United States for the last seventeen days.

They visited Rotary clubs in seven states, collecting donated children’s books written by regional authors, and sharing the story of the grass-roots community effort to promote literacy.

This morning, Worlds of Wonder, or WOW, left Bakersfield for Fresno and the last Rotary meeting of the Road Trip. The Jones’ expected to leave Fresno around 2 p.m. this afternoon and invited the first people to spot the book mobile in Tuolumne County to call the library at 533-5507. Jones said the first caller to verify the correct time and place sighted will have a book, donated by Prudential California Gold Real Estate, placed in their name on the new mobile library.

Friday, the couple was in Gallup, New Mexico headed for the Grand Canyon. Saturday morning they woke to a light dusting of snow at the South Rim of the Canyon, then went on to Flagstaff and Sedona, Arizona for more sight-seeing of the beautiful red rock high desert.

While crossing the Mojave desert yesterday, a traveler from Sonora spotted the book mobile at a rest stop between Barstow and Needles, California, adding to the many “locals” who found the the couple crossing the country.

The Jones’ said this has been the trip of a lifetime for them, but it will be good to be home. They especially wanted to thank the hundreds of individuals, service clubs and businesses who contributed to purchasing the vehicle over the past year.

With the leadership of Sonora 49’er Rotary, Friends of the Tuolumne County Library, and Sonora Area Foundation partnered in the year-long fund raising drive to purchase the vehicle, for a total of almost $100,000. All major donors have been recognized with their decals posted on the outside of the vehicle that also sports a colorful mountain-scene mural on both sides.

“WOW” will not only be the first bookmobile in the Mother Lode, but will provide story times for young children, literacy tutoring and Internet access through satellite-connected computers on board.

A “Reading Road Trip” taken by the mobile library, with postcards from each State visited will be displayed in the lobby of the main library at 480 Greenley Road in Sonora. Prudential California Gold Real Estate, funded the “Reading Road Trip.”

Sonora 49’er Rotary officially presents the keys and title to the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors at 11:45 a.m. November 12. The public is invited to take a look. November 13 at will find the book mobile at the Sonora Opera Hall for the forum on new technology: “Connecting Rural California Now.” Later in the month, “WOW” will be entered in the Sonora holiday parade November 29, and doors will be open the following week at Heaven for Kids Park near the main library from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily, Monday thru Saturday, December 2 through 7.