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Children battle for reading championships

Jul. 30, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- A dozen teams representing each branch of the Cabell County Public Library took part in the 11th Battle of the Books Monday night at the main library in downtown Huntington.

The competition featured children in third through fifth grades, with middle school teams battling Tuesday night, beginning at 6 p.m., by showing their knowledge about the books they've read.

The annual summer reading program puts kids to the test, as they are asked to read 10 books in about 10 weeks, while also meeting weekly with their teammates to practice answering questions.

"It's a fun evening for the library community," said Breana Bowen, the new youth services manager. "I can't believe the turnout of parents and the community here to support them."

This year's elementary winner was the Tome Titans from the Gallaher branch. The team featured Max Withers, Eli Booten, Mia Crookshanks, Zoe Davin, Jasmine Estep and Eli Young. Withers, a 9-year-old Southside Elementary student, said winning felt pretty good.

"I think we just had a good (summer)," Withers said. "We worked together and had fun."

Parents also were impressed at how hard the kids worked this summer to read all the books and prepare for the battle. Kari Burdick said her son, Jackson, was very dedicated and engaged at each weekly meeting.

Danielle Adkins said it was exciting to watch her son, Tobey, and his teammates win second place. But that's nothing compared to his goals this summer.

"He read quite a bit and he's not done," Adkins said. "He has a lofty goal of 100 books. I think (winning) will be very motivating."

Tobey Adkins' team, Agents L.M.N.T., represented the West branch and also included Lauren Willis, Mackenzi Pyle and Noah Swann.

Coming in third was the Book Worms from the Guyandotte branch. The team included Lucy Skaff, Claudia Black, Daniel Brown, Katie Losh, Makenzie Nottingham and Taylor Nunley.

The other teams included the Gallaher Gators, Gallaher; Indian Rock Readers, Salt Rock; Book Stars, main library; Cox Landing Cats and Cougars, Cox Landing; Killer Bees, Gallaher; Milton Warriors, Milton; Killer Dragons, Gallaher; Hurricanes, Barboursville; and Book Busters, main library.

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