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Gurnee teen gives time, new ideas to library

Alice Dwyer 15 Gurnee volunteers her time shelving DVDs with programs Warren-Newport Public Library Gurnee. | Thomas Delany Jr.~Sun-Times Media

Alice Dwyer, 15, of Gurnee, volunteers her time shelving DVDs and with programs at the Warren-Newport Public Library in Gurnee. | Thomas Delany Jr.~Sun-Times Media

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Updated: March 27, 2013 2:12AM

GURNEE — Twice a week, Alice Dwyer, 15, schedules school around volunteer work at Warren-Newport Public Library District (WNPLD). Alice is home-schooled and said it was no trouble to volunteer four hours a week at the library during the day time.

“It’s just a really nice place and it has books. I love books. It’s like a second home to me,” Alice said.

She started volunteering at the library a little less than a year ago, according to WNPLD Volunteer Coordinator Laura Stone. About 30 teens volunteer throughout the year, Stone estimated, but some put more hours in than others.

Alice is an “outstanding teen volunteer” who works in several areas. She shelves DVDs, had some clerical work and assists during many of the library’s programs, Stone said.

“She’s wonderful. Everyone wants her back. She’s a sweet, nice, lovely girl,” said Stone.

Alice started volunteering in July 2012. She helps with story time and runs programming for the small ones.

She also suggested a teen program that is scheduled for Feb. 9. Alice has been a vegetarian for two years and pitched “Veg Out” to teach teens to cook different, meatless dishes.

“I did a lot of research. (Eating meat) seems so cruel with the animals. Vegetarian is so healthy,” Alice said. “Most people think vegetarians eat just vegetables, but there’s so much more to eat.”

She said she is currently planning which recipes she wants to teach at the program.

“At least five people signed up already. It’s big for me,” Alice said.

Alice loves reading young adult fiction and doing color guard work in her free time. She is part of a non-school affiliated flag and rifle group out of Dundee.

She also discovered a love for painting and sketching.

“I want to be an artist and go to School of the Art Institute of Chicago,” Alice said.

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