Red Barn Books of VT in Shelburne is celebrating the Fourth of July with the release of a new book, “Willie the Jumping Frog”, written by local resident Bill Skiff. In a tradition that Mark Twain and Huck Finn would likely approve, Skiff has led Williston’s Independence Day children’s festivities as “Frog Master,” officiating at the popular activity he initiated 25 years ago.
More than a hundred children find, care for, and jump their frogs, each earning a ribbon for success. Willie’s win is unexpected as he is just a bit small, has wounded his foot, and is a little bit scared; nonetheless, he ultimately learns that is “it’s not the size of the frog that matters it’s the jump in the frog that wins.” This lesson is one that Skiff hopes to share with children and families beyond the Fourth of July. The former school guidance counselor hopes to inspire children to have fun playing simple games out of doors and learning about nature. He also hopes to collaborate with other adults and organizations to hold fund-raising frog-jumping contests to support anti-bullying campaigns. For more information about frog-jumping contests, contact Bill Skiff at firstname.lastname@example.org. Books may be purchased through Red Barn Books (985-3091; Lin@windridgebooksofvt.com) and at local bookstores.