Lima’s Spartan Ride restarts in June

LIMA — Children searching for a new book to read this summer can visit the Spartan Ride, a mobile library operated by Lima schools.

The bus is stocked with free books, calculators, workbooks, take-home kits, games and Wi-Fi, available to Lima students and their parents.

“We’ve got everything here,” said Laura Wells Parent, a Title I coordinator for Lima schools.

The Spartan Ride will travel to locations such as Lima West Apartments, Lima schools, MLK Park and Faurot Park in June, coinciding with the district’s summer lunch program, which provides free meals to any child or teenager between the ages of 1 and 18.

Lima schools started the Spartan Ride two years ago, using pandemic aid to refurbish a bus to act as a mobile library so families wouldn’t have to travel far for assistance.

Parents who need help registering their child for school, accessing their child’s grades or applying for jobs can visit the Spartan Ride, which comes stocked with other resources like information on immunizations and adult education programs.

“It’s so hard if you’re not a techie to learn all the things you need to do as a parent,” Parent said.

The Ohio State University-Lima education club donated 70 books to the Spartan Ride on Wednesday to boost the mobile library’s literacy efforts.

“One of the biggest predictors of vocabulary growth is how much students are able to read,” said Regan King, the club’s treasurer, “so with it being summer, it’s good to get these books out here to give the kids access to these books.”

When will Spartan Ride visit your neighborhood?

• Thursday, June 6: 11 a.m. at Lincoln Park and 11:45 a.m. at Unity Elementary School

• Monday, June 10: 11:30 a.m. at Faurot Park, noon at Liberty Arts Magnet and 1 p.m. at Children’s Garden

• Tuesday, June 11: 11 a.m. at South Science and Technology Magnet and noon at MLK Park

• Tuesday, June 18: 11:30 a.m. at Lima West Apartments and 12:15 p.m. at Heritage Elementary School

• Wednesday, June 19: 11 a.m. at Independence Elementary School and noon at Maplewood Apartments

• Monday, June 24: 11 a.m. at Red Cross parking lot and noon at Marimor playground

Summer meal program locations

Free hot meals will be available from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Mondays and Thursday starting June 3 through July 25 at these locations:

• Heritage Elementary School, 816 College Ave., Lima

• Independence Elementary School, 615 Tremont Ave., Lima

• Liberty Arts Magnet, 338 W. Kibby St., Lima

• Unity Elementary School, 925 E. Third St., Lima

Free packaged meals from the Spartan Lunch Express will be available June 3 through July 25 at:

• Lincoln Park: 11 to 11:20 a.m.

• MLK Park: 11:30 to 11:50 a.m.

• Faurot Park: Noon to 12:20 p.m.

• Lima West Apartments: 11:30 to 11:50 a.m. (shelf-stable meals)

• Maplewood Apartments: Noon to 12:20 p.m. (shelf-stable meals)

No meals will be available on July 4. Meals are available to any child or teenager between the ages of 1 and 18. Children do not need to attend Lima schools to qualify.