Monday, August 5, 2013

A tale of 24 Waldos

Yes, now it can be told. Twenty-four was the official number of cardboard Waldos hidden among our shelves at Wednesday's Find Waldo Party. The intrepid young detectives, many clad in Waldo camouflage themselves, earned raffle tickets by finding some or all of the slippery, stripy fellows. The raffle winner would receive a Where's Waldo boxed set, but for many of those looking for him, the thrill was really in the hunt. One group of preteens, who'd joined the search spontaneously and quite successfully when they saw what was going on, had to leave before the drawing. I offered to take down their contact information in case they won, and they debated whether that was worthwhile, as they weren't as interested in the prize as they'd been in the activity (or perhaps already had their own Waldo books). "Well, if we win," I heard one of them say, "We can give them to Children's Hospital."

But the kids weren't the only stars of event. Waldo himself made a live appearance, and what an appearance it was! Eagle-eyed visitors spotted him peeking out from behind bookshelves, dancing down the aisles, even sneaking up on browsers as they focused on our map selection. We booksellers (a certain travel guru in particular) watched him in fascination, and he had his younger admirers, too. His emulators were many, and the Waldo costume contest was a spirited competition. The adorable, bespectacled winner received a book of Waldo posters, and the runners-up got Waldo postcard books. One very young runner-up, striped from head to toe, found a use for her first postcard immediately: she colored it for Waldo.

The perfect activity for a summer afternoon? I'd say we found it.

For Elephant and Piggie, however, the search continues.

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