By TAYLOR HARTZ
Three representatives from Homewood Suites, located on West Street, spent an afternoon with Kelley Elementary School kindergarteners last week.
Amanda Roberts, Lily Lacknicki, and Jessica Sample read to two kindergarten classes, taught by Rosemary Risser and Amy Lasbury, sharing the story of “Lewis the Duck.”
Lewis is the mascot of Homewood Suites and appears on their logo.
The reading was part of an annual initiative by Hilton Hotels, where staff read the newest book in the “Lewis” series to a local classroom. This year’s book is the fourth in a series written by Bill Duncan.
Risser, one of the classroom teachers, said she hopes the students would focus on the book’s main theme of “how can you help you environment and community.”
Lewis’ story also taught a great lesson in teamwork, said Risser, and taught students that “when you all work together it makes things a little bit easier.”
At Homewood Suites, giving back to the community is a big focus.
As they approach their two-year anniversary in Southington this December, Roberts, Director of Sales, said the hotel has sponsored local food drives for residents, and has been active in the United Way’s “Festival of Lights.”
Lacknicki, supervisor of the hotel’s laundry department, said her department recently collected and donated linens to Almost Home, a no-kill dog and cat shelter in Plainville.
“It helps to instill it at a young age so they know it’s always good to help the community,” said Sample.
Lacknicki added that aiming to give back to their community “is a great goal for them.”
When Risser asked the more than 30 five to six-year-olds what lessons they learned from the book, a dozen hands shot up in the air.
Students shared that the story of Lewis taught them about recycling, cleaning up, helping others, and the importance of libraries and clean water supplies.
In addition to the reading of the story, each student was given a free copy of the book from Homewood Suites.