NEW PORT RICHEY — When it comes to dragons, most people just think about giant, scaly creatures that breathe fire. But according to bestselling picture book author, Adam Rubin, dragons have something in common with humans. They can’t get enough tacos.
“Dragons Love Tacos” is a New York Times bestselling children’s book, written by Rubin and illustrated by Daniel Salmieri. The food-centered picture book was celebrated on Aug. 24 at Regency Park Branch Library, where children had the chance to enjoy tacos with “dragon-safe salsa,” because according to the book, dragons and spicy salsa do not go well together.
The event started with a reading of the book by Karyn Stanley, a library assistant for Regency Park.
Stanley also held a demonstration on making salsa. She made two different recipes, but both were mild of course. She made one that a child could make by themselves using store-bought ingredients, and one with fresh ingredients that would need assistance from an adult due to the use of knives.
Over 35 children, in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade, attended the event and were able to take home the recipes.
This event is the first in a “Cook-A-Book” series to be held at the library. Stanley hopes to create a food based on a children’s book once a month. For example, in October, the participants will make “spider sandwiches,” inspired by a book of the same name.
Jennifer Sims brought her 4-year-old daughter, Hope, because she liked how the event taught the children how to do something new and have a good time while doing it.
Sims said that it’s fun and anything that children can do for fun is a good idea.
“Especially that it’s free and air conditioned,” she laughed. “And it’s educational. That’s an extra perk there.”
Stanley thought that both the book and the event would appeal to most youngsters.
“Kids love dragons and kids love tacos,” she said. “The book is great and who doesn’t love a taco party?”
She said that the name of the event came naturally because they are “literally taking a book and cooking from it.” She hopes that the food-focused event will show how much more there is to a book than just words.
“There’s so many books that have to do with food, and it’s a great way to get the children into reading and expanding beyond the reading point,” Stanley said. “Books are more than just reading a book. You can expand on it.”
The tacos were prepared with the help of teen volunteers.
Regency Park Branch Library is at 9701 Little Road. Call 727-861-3049 or visit the calendar on pascolibraries.org for future events.