NEW PORT RICHEY — In a new book by New Port Richey author Kyrja Withers, Rupert the Rabbit learns about reducing, reusing and recycling when a boy and his family takes him out of his woodland home to stay with them for three months before relasing him back into the wild.
There, he meets a dog, a fish and cat named Simba who teaches him about electricity, the water cycle, and why people need clean drinking water.
“Rupert Helps Clean Up” is the fourth book in a series of children’s books called “Rupert’s Tales” that follows the brown-furred rabbit and his woodland friends on adventures as they learn about pagan holidays.
Instead of focusing on pagan holidays and traditions, the new title teaches children about environmental responsibility.
“Reduce, reuse and recycle are not just words,” Withers said. “It’s important that they are things we do all the time.”
What makes this book different is that there is no mention of God and Goddess, Wither said. “This one is for any and everybody. You don’t have to be pagan to enjoy the magic found in Rupert’s Tales, all knowledge is worth having, but this will probably be more widely-accepted by a much more generic audience,” she added.
“Honoring naturing and taking care of it is everybody’s’ business no matter what your faith may be,” Withers said. “We all live on this planet together. This is about nature, period. It’s about how we all need to pitch in and help.”
Withers will release her new book on Saturday, Oct. 5 at Peace Hall, where she married her husband Randy. The hall lies across from Sims Park at Sims Lane and Grand Boulevard in downtown New Port Richey.
From noon to 5 p.m., there will be special deals on her new book, which normally retails for $19.99, the previous two hardcovers and the activity book. Everyone who attends will receive a free Rupert poster and can enter to win a Rupert’s 2014 Wheel of the Year calendar, Friends of Rupert T-shirt, Friends of Rupert soap by Power of Three Creations or activity book.
Wither said the book was originally supposed to publish last year. She has been telling the four stories included in “Rupert Helps Clean Up” at local pagan festivals and events the past year, along with posterboards and illustrations.
Some of the stories are also available in an oral storytelling format through Wither’s Friends of Rupert YouTube channel.
The book is dedicated to Jennifer Seney, the Pasco County Recycling Coordinator, and all those who do their part to keep their community clean.
Other than being a children’s book author, Withers is a practicing pagan and active in community service groups. She founded Hands of the Goddess, an organization that collects clothing and toiletries for domestic violence shelters, and the Friends of Rupert Road Cleanup Crew, which cleans up local roadways and waterways four times a year.
“We walk our talk,” Withers said.
For more information about Rupert’s Tales, visit www.friendsofrupert.com/.