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Launched in 2014 by journalist Sean Baker, Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

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Library's Bookmobile adding fresh produce to its shelves this summer

Library's Bookmobile adding fresh produce to its shelves this summer

Produce grown and harvested at local schools will be distributed to families across Rochester this summer as part of the Rochester Public Library's "Summer Playlist" program. 

This marks the first year the library is teaming up with Rochester Public Schools to bring free produce to local neighborhoods. The food will come from community gardens at two Rochester schools — Riverside Central Elementary and the Rochester Alternative Learning Center — and will be delivered by library staff via the Bookmobile.

“The school gardens are a valuable teaching tool,” said Heather Acerro, head of youth services at RPL. “This partnership will be meaningful for both the students who work so hard to grow the food, and those who receive it.”

In addition to providing fresh produce, library staff will be delivering books and facilitating art projects at multiple sites June through August. The events are meant to provide improved access to the library’s services, especially for families in under-served areas in the community. 

“We work to increase access to our materials through our Bookmobile and BookBike, but having these events will create an even richer experience for local families," Acerro said in a news release from the library.

The project is made possible with funding from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund and the people of Minnesota for Library Legacy activities.

You can visit the library's website to learn more about the Summer Playlist program, plus a schedule of upcoming "On the Road" events.

Cover photo: Creative Commons 

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