Library class allows students to be creative

Published 12:00 pm Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Seventeen students crowded around a long table covered in paint chips, talking and laughing as they decorated boxes.

“I’m going to put coins in my memory box,” said Mathilde Hufford-Verrone. “My dad collects them with me, and Greek coins are my favorite.”

The students were at the Lafayette County and Oxford Public Library on Thursday for craft time. The library hosts the activities twice a month during the summer, once a month during the school year.

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“Kids love getting creative,” said Nancy Olpalko, the library’s Children’s Director. “We try to do more creative classes during the summer to keep their minds active.”

Hufford-Varrone, the daughter of Zed Varrone and Jennifer Hufford, said she has been to many art classes at the library. Her favorites are the ones that involving painting.

On Thursday, the session focused on making memory boxes out of shoeboxes and books.

“The old books got torn up in the library or were a donation we couldn’t use,” Olpalko said.

Max Milinovich, son of Micah and Quin Milinovich, used pictures from a Captain Hook book to decorate his memory box. He plans to store coins and a flipbook his grandmother gave him in the box.

Leah Potts, daughter of JJ and Jenifer Potts, said she was going to put pictures of her black lab, Izzy, and her favorite movie character, Dorothy, in her memory box.

And her brother, Cole Potts, decorated his memory box with pictures that will remind him of summer, like images of the beach and a boy playing outside.

“This is a great way to bring in new families that may not otherwise use the library,” Olpalko said. “Sometimes parents will come in to use our computers and we ask their kids to join (craft time).”

Fourteen volunteers, all in middle or high school, help Olpalko with craft time and the rest of the summer programs.

Craft time is free, but space is limited.

For more information, contact the Lafayette County & Oxford Public Library at 662-234-5751 or visit their website at