New Reading and Learning Space

Oshkosh Express Laundry Center adds children’s reading and learning space; plus new enhancements

Oshkosh, Wis. — Oshkosh Express Laundry Center (Oshkosh Express) is encouraging children to take home a free book as part of a nationwide movement to bring learning to local public laundries The laundry recently debuted a new reading and learning area for children — a Read, Play, Learn (RPL) space — aimed at improving childhood literacy and brain development in pre-K children.

The RPL is among several recent enhancements to the laundry, according to Manager Kristi Williams. Other improvements include new paint and signage; a new bank of 2.5- and 3.5-load LG high-speed commercial washers; and an automated chemical dispensing system, Express Clean™, which is connected to the store’s largest, 12-load washer. All are in place for greater customer convenience, according to Williams.

“By giving free books to customers’ children and providing an educational space for them to learn, tell stories and interact with their parents, Oshkosh Express is helping strengthen childhood literacy,” said Williams.

According to The Clinton Foundation’s Too Small to Fail initiative, a leading public awareness and action campaign that promotes the importance of early brain and language development, almost 60 percent of American children start kindergarten underprepared. Moreover, about 80 percent of brain development occurs before the age of 5, which sets the stage for future success and learning. These statistics spearheaded a number of non-profit organizations, including Too Small to Fail and LaundryCares, to collaborate and form the Laundry Literacy Coalition. The Laundry Literacy Coalition – with the idea of bringing literacy to the public library — created RPL kits, like the one at Oshkosh Express, for laundries to purchase.

“The kids and their caregivers love the interactive space and are surprised and elated when we urge them to take a book home with them,” said Williams. “We replenish the books each month and hope to eventually partner with local organizations to offer scheduled story times.”

The RPL was added at the same time Oshkosh Express installed several new 2-, 2.5- and 3.5-load LG machines and an Express Clean automatic chemical dispensing system.  Like the other equipment at the laundry, the LGs produce high-extract speeds, reduce drying time and ensure customers can complete laundry — wash, dry and fold it — in less than 60 minutes. Now Oshkosh Express features 2.5-, 3.5-, 5-, 6-, 8- and 12-load washers, along with complementing dryers, for self-service customers.

Connected to the laundry’s 12-load washer, the new Express Clean system automatically dispenses lightly scented detergent, softener and bleach into the washer at perfect time, water level and temperature. Encased in a clear, plexiglass case so customers can see it operating, Express Clean eliminates the need for manual loading of detergents. “It makes it easier for customers because they do not need to lug and load detergent when using our 12-load washer,” said Williams. “It’s an efficient way to wash family sized loads, sleeping bags, comforters, quilts and bulky items. Our customers love seeing the system light up as it works.”

Committed to customer service and convenience, Oshkosh Express is a continually improved  high-speed laundry offering free WIFI, comfortable seating, flat-screen televisions, vending machines, convenient drive-up door, full-service wash/dry/fold and drop-off dry cleaning. Now it’s also a place where children can read, interact and learn on laundry day.

For more information about Oshkosh Express — open 8 a.m.-10 p.m. daily — visit www.expresslaundrycenter.com or call 920-303-6762. To find out more about the Laundry Literacy Coalition, visit https://laundrycares.org/laundry-literacy-coalition/.