Downtown children's bookstore brings community together

Laura Pittman

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Building community around reading is one of Christine Brenner's passions — one she reinforces at her new store — Read With Me, A Children's Book & Art Shop. An educator and elementary school librarian before her young son was born, Christine and her husband dreamed of owning a book shop after retirement. With retirement many years away the couple moved up the plans, did the research, got the loans and made their dream happen last April.

Read With Me has a carefully selected collection of children's literature that engages, inspires and connects a family of readers. In addition to books, Christine Brenner and staff display art created for and by children, specializing in children's illustrations. The heart of the store is the Learning Lab where local artists and authors connect with the community to share a collective creative knowledge and energy.