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Manteca Library Story Time at fire station
MFD STORY1-10-11-12a
Jordan Tankersley, left, and Alyssa Cejsa dressed for the occasion as they stood next to Fire Engine No. 24 during story time at the Union Road fire station. - photo by HIME ROMERO

Ruthanne Bassett read to children Wednesday about firefighters, of all places, at a firehouse.

“That was a first for me,” said the Manteca Branch Library assistant.

She did a shorten version of her Story Time presentation at the City of Manteca Fire Station No. 2 as part of National Fire Prevention Week.

Amy Kelley heard about Story Time at the firehouse during a recent visit to the library.

“My son (Samuel) was so excited,” she said. “He kept asking: ‘Mommy is this day we go to the fire station?’”

Samuel Kelley, 6, and his young cousin Jackson Pellizzari came dressed as firefighters, joining the other youngsters close to their age on the tour of the Union Station firehouse.

 “They loved it,” Amy Kelley said.

The younger Kelley and Pellizzari had a chance to see a fire truck up close and learn about the accommodations inside an actual fire station.

Prior to that, Bassett read “Firefighter Ted” along with picture book “Firefighters.”

Fire marshal Lantz Rey was surprised with the overwhelming Story Time attendance. At one point, he helped direct traffic surrounding the firehouse facilities. “Next year, we’ll have to be better prepared,” Rey said.

He also noted that a community-wide effort of installing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors – in conjunction with senior breakfast held in September – is underway in the homes of seniors.

“Senior (citizens) and little kids, according to statistics, are most likely to die in a fire,” Rey said. “Both are at-risk groups.”

All told, 45 of these detectors made possible by the Fire Chief’s Foundation were installed at no cost to seniors during this time, according to Rey.

The local National Fire Prevention week also included a poster coloring contest for second-grade students, with Manteca Unified providing the design.

Ryann Bergen, who is a student in teacher Vannaesia Ley’s second-grade class at Brock Elliott School, was recognized as the winner.

The youngster received a gift certificate to Chiliberries along with some other goodies to be shared with her class.