SOUTHINGTON – Southington Librarian Lynn Pawloski has been honored with the 2022 Innovation in Outreach Programming Award from the Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services.
The award recognizes a library's achievement in planning and implementing an innovative and creative outreach program that has had a measurable impact on the community.
Pawloski's project, "The Literacy of Laughter: A Community Gets Schooled in the Art of Comedy", provided improvisational comedy workshops and opportunities to perform at the Hartford-based Sea Tea Improv Comedy Theater.
Pawloski said that participants learned how practicing improvisational comedy strengthens listening and communication skills and that taking risks and making mistakes "sometimes leads us to better, unexpected places." The program also taught people how to "process the collective trauma of contemporary life through a comedic lens."
Pawloski said she is "extremely grateful" for the openness of the Southington Community.
"Trying improv comedy is difficult and the town embraced the challenge in the spirit of fun and connection it was meant to be," she said. "The Southington Library and the improv community share similar values. They are both welcoming, safe places where differences are respected, new ideas valued, and ways to find common ground are explored."
Pawloski added that the Literacy of Laughter program's goal was for participants to "have fun, challenge themselves, and see the Southington Library as a vehicle of connection."
Kristi Sadowski, library director, said she is "thrilled" by Pawloski's "ambition and creativity."
"This was a great program with many positive benefits to the community," she said. "The entire Board of Directors and myself wish Lynn a hearty congratulations and know this award was well deserved.”
Pawloski said that the library, fueled by the positive response received from the project, wishes to "keep the momentum going" with "new, creative community ventures."
Presented as part of the local library's Summer Reading Program, "Literacy of Laughter" was funded by CT Humanities, the Calvanese Foundation Green & White Fund and the KAWFY Memorial Fund at the Main Street Community Foundation.
Southington Public Library is located at 255 Main St.
For more information on Southington Public Library, call 860-628-0947 or visit southingtonlibrary.org.
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or email@example.com.