Smithsonian traveling exhibit arrives in Tri-Cities

Mid-Columbia Libraries is inviting young readers to visit the Smithsonian Institution's Journey Stories that arrives in the Tri-Cities this week.

Readers also are encouraged to sign up for the Winter Reading Challenge, which could earn one of two Nook Color or Kindle Fire tablets.

Everyone who completes the challenge will receive a free book.

The grand prize for people who enter by Thursday is a chance to win a train trip for four with the Mount Hood Railroad.

The Journey Stories is a traveling national exhibit at the Kennewick Branch Library, 1620 S. Union St., that opens todaywith a ceremony at 4:30 p.m.

It shows how transportation and travel built the nation and how it brought changes over the years.

A free, multimedia exhibit, it involves photographs, audio, historical objects and interpretive materials to show how mobility helped a young nation develop through the personal struggles and successes of travelers.

The exhibit will remain at the library through Jan. 20.

In connection with the theme of travels, there will be five special programs presented during the next six weeks.

All of them will be in the evening at the Kennewick Branch Library. They include:

-- 7 p.m. Thursday: Michele Gerber talking about coming to Hanford during World War II, a Once-in-a-Lifetime Journey.

-- 7 p.m. Jan. 5: Rachael Tengbom talking about a Journey of Hope -- a Story from Africa.

-- 6:30 p.m. Jan. 10: Native American storyteller John Cox telling stories and showing crafts.

-- 7 p.m. Jan. 19: Bruce and Susan Matley telling Journeys of the West with Cowboys and Cowgirls in Story and Song.

-- 7 p.m. Jan. 20: Michael Sullivan telling the Amazing Saga of Paul Satko.

Readers who want to sign up for the Winter Reading Challenge can sign up at www.midcolumbialibraries.org. The goal is to complete at least six hours of reading by Jan. 20.

-- John Trumbo: 582-1529; jtrumbo@tricityherald.com