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Russellville Public Library hosts event with PAWS for summer reading program

When Russellville Public Library Director Ashley Cummins heard the theme for this year’s summer reading program, Tails and Tales, she said she instantly thought about the animal organization PAWS and how the library could partner with it.

This partnership came to fruition Friday, as children came to hear stories, enjoy an art project and receive a stuffed animal check-up.

“The partnership with PAWS came from my love for animals and because the library tends to be a pretty popular drop-off spot for animals,” Cummins said. “We work a lot with a lot of different rescues because of this, so they were our first thought when we heard the theme.”

Children were able to enjoy a reading of “Brer Rabbit” by Russellville Library Board president Lela Ray before participating in several activities.

Children were able to bring in stuffed animals to receive a check-up from Mission Medical workers.

“We thought this would allow kids to see what all goes into check-ups and help them to not be as afraid of the doctor,” Cummins said.

Cummins said the idea for the stuffed animal check-up came from Helen Keller Library. “We loved it and just thought it was such an adorable idea that we wanted to include,” Cummins said.

Representative from PAWS Tambra Howard had an arts and crafts activity set up for the children, while educating parents about the spay/neuter program PAWS offers.

“We get calls from people all of the time wanting to know if we still offer our spay/neuter program, and we absolutely do,” Howard said. “We really try to work with everyone to make sure we can get as many animals spayed and neutered as possible.”

Howard said PAWS works financially with each family to make getting a pet spayed/neutered attainable through community donations.

“There are so many animals already in shelters and in need of a family, and getting animals spayed/neutered is the main way we are going to fix the problem,” Howard said.

To apply for PAWS spay/neuter program, fill out an application at and use code shelter or e-mail any questions to Howard at

Ray said she wanted to encourage people to attend the next meeting for the library board, July 20 at 5:30 p.m. at RPL. She asked that anyone interested in attending call ahead to let the board know who to expect, and anyone interested in speaking must call a week early to ensure they are on the agenda.