After breaking down on the U.S. 1,

The 2011 Transitions/VSP Success is in Sight tour encountered a set back when Bess the Book Bus broke down en route to Millinocket. Getting a tow turned into an ordeal, but the worst part of the day was missing our event. Aid for Kids brought a care package on our behalf filled with brand new books and hand sewn blankets. The books went out on time  with Bangor Savings as part of an exciting day with a bounce house and lunch to lift the spirits of a downtrodden town.

Millinocket has faced a series of hardships over the past three years including the closing of its two paper mills. The most recent closing happened in April, leaving hundreds unemployed. Tax revenue is down and causing cutbacks in the town’s services. The library hours were cut in half. Opal Myrick Elementary School will move from its building and start the school year inside the high school.

Fort Fairfield

With Bess still in the shop, the 2011 Transitions/VSP Success is in Sight tour continued book fair style in Fort Fairfield. We brought boxes of brand new books into the library and spread out on the tables. Children browsed around looking through the titles. We had a great selection including books from Candlewick Press, Capstone Publishing, Penguin and Townsend Press. After everyone found the perfect book, it was story time in the children’s room.

Fort Kent

Oliver Caron looks in awe as Jennifer Frances shares fun facts from "Snakes" by Capstone Publishing.

Fort Kent features the northernmost point of U.S. 1, the 2,300 mile road that travels through 13 states along the Atlantic coast before ending in Key West. But unlike the Southern tip, Fort Kent is not known for year round visitors. The 2011 Transitions/VSP Success is in Sight Tour traveled north at the request of Michelle Raymond, Fort Kent’s head librarian. More than 30 children were also excited that Bess the Book Bus made the drive, including six-year-old Oliver Caron. Snakes are one of his favorite things and found the perfect book on Bess’s shelves.

There are more updates coming from our month in Maine. Stay up to date on all of travels by following Bess the Book Bus on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Pictures from the Maine events and the rest of the 2011 Transistions/VSP Success is in Sight tour are also online at Picasa. Until next time, safe travel through the pages.