Walnut Hill: West Philadelphia Library Develops the Community One Family at a Time

Nani Manion made time to help children with their homework despite her busy Saturday schedule.
Jordan Murph, 11, sat quietly and read in the children's department at the Lucien E. Blackwell Library.

The Lucien E. Blackwell West Philadelphia Regional Library is home away from home for many Walnut Hill families. The library is situated in the heart of West Philadelphia on 125 S. 52nd St. Operating on a mission to advance literacy within the community, the library works to guide learning for all age groups.

Nani Manion heads the children’s department at the library. Manion said the summer months are very busy, as her department offers several programs to keep children reading and learning throughout the summer.

“We do a giant summer reading game to keep kids reading over the summer,“ said Manion. “It is an incentive program. … This summer I am really excited, because we will be giving out books as prizes.”

Two youths kept occupied with a book while they waited for the day's activities to begin.

Denise Marcio, 41, brings her two children to the library “almost everyday.” Marcio recently moved to Walnut Hill. “The DVD sections, the books, the way they help the kids with their home work [are very helpful],” Marcio said.

In addition to the children’s learning programs, the library will offer a family quilting project. Each Saturday in July, the library will bring together people of all ages to sew individual quilt squares. The project will culminate at the end of the month with the sewing together and presentation of the first community quilt in Walnut Hill.


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