As a child, I remember finding myself tickled when I learned the meaning of “conceited” from one of books from The Baby-sitters Club series: I think Kristy used the word, and I went to the dictionary to find out what it meant. Reading and writing are tools absolutely essential to children’s mental development, and, when made enjoyable, can jumpstart a lifelong passion for the written word, an art form we at CityBeat are especially compassionate about. Northside’s new Wordplay, a non-profit inspired by novelist Dave Eggers’ organization, 826 National, will offer a “third place” for children aside from school and home, providing a safe, inspirational place for children to grow and find their voice through creative expression and word-love. Tour the new facility for the grand opening, complete with word games, drinks and live music. The organization starts offering after-school programs the week of Sept. 10. Check out the website for details on volunteering with Wordplay or to enroll your child. 5-10 p.m. Saturday Sept. 8. Wordplay Cincy, 4041 Hamilton Ave., Northside. wordplaycincy.org.