[kids-lib] Standing Tall While Sitting Down

Mary Ryan mryan at crooklib.org
Wed Jul 1 11:37:56 PDT 2015

Last night we hosted wheelchair athlete Kacey McCallister for our Be Your Own Hero program.  I was shocked to find out that we were the only library to invite him to speak this summer!!  He indicated that there were fears that he was not age appropriate.  So, I want to speak on his behalf and say that I am so glad we invited him for our family night!

No, he isn't a guy you want to bring in to do your 2 year old Music Together program, but anyone else would be thrilled to see him.  The youngest kids sit in front of our program room - 3,4,5,6,7 and up and within moments he had those kids laughing and smiling and interacting!  Phenomenal is the word that comes to my mind.

Yes, I wondered how their initial reaction would be and yes, at first the kids were reserved and stand offish and one little boy even hid behind is grandmother.  Yet, in no time at all Kacey brought them out of their shells and had them smiling and asking questions and listening to his incredible life story.

His audience management was superb, his physical feats impressive, and his lessons inspiring.  I honestly can't say enough great things about him.  The children and adults in attendance last night have had their lives changed.  He was inspiring as a speaker and through is high energy positive can-do attitude those kids will never look at a person in a wheelchair the same again.  Before I even got home last night, people were writing comments. (I will post below.)

Please consider Kacey McCallister in the future for any age or family program.  You won't be disappointed!  I would be glad to answer questions if you have any reservations at all about him!
kaceyzmccallister at gmail.com

"Loved this program tonight!! Great message for our son who was born with Cerebral Palsy and Speech Apraxia! He's been told he can't or won't be able to do things and he just keeps plugging along."  ~Tana

"Our very favorite Superhero Librarian, Mary Ryan, arranged to have Kacey McCallister speak tonight at the Summer Reading Program event. He was AMAZING!!! So inspirational, funny, interactive, energized, reached all ages and really great w/all of the kiddos...even the younger ones! (He does have 3 of his own! LOL!) If you ever get a chance to see him...I highly suggest it! One of his main messages was that "you can do anything" and "don't let anyone tell you that you can't"! Every library and school should have him come and speak! Please ask your local libraries, schools and organizations to have him come and speak! Adults should hear him too!"  ~Cheryl

Mary E. Ryan, M.Ed
Youth Services Associate II
Crook County Library
175 NW Meadow Lakes Dr.
Prineville, OR 97754
(541) 447-7978 ext. 306
MRyan at crooklib.org

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