Tuesday morning toddlers and young kids got a treat when Clifford the Big Red Dog showed up for storytime at the .
The special event began with Sherri Galego reading a couple of stories to children seated on a colorful rug in the library's Raytheon Room.
Galego works with the U.Fund Start U. Reading Series, a "literacy initiative that visits libraries and community centers throughout the state," according to its website. She said the program has given away about 5,500 books in the seven years since it launched, including small satchels of books the children received after Clifford's visit on Tuesday.
As Galego read "The Three Little Pigs" to the squirming crowd, Kim Little donned her Clifford costume and entered moments after the story concluded to squeals of excitement -- and a few tears from the very young set.
As children crawled into straw, stick and brick facades, Galego retold the story of "The Three Little Pigs" with Clifford playing the role of the Big, Bad Wolf. At each house, Clifford "huffed and puffed and blew the house down," only to reach the brick home and have his tail burned trying to climb down the chimney.
"There's a difference betwee sitting and listening to a story and acting out the story," Galego said. "We try to make reading an exciting thing.