While most likely his most famous quote, it's important to note that when Theodore Roosevelt spoke the words "speak softly and carrying a big stick," the U.S. President was describing his foreign policy not his demeanor.

While most likely his most famous quote, it's important to note that when Theodore Roosevelt spoke the words "speak softly and carrying a big stick," the U.S. President was describing his foreign policy not his demeanor.

That was learned by around 105 individuals, including many children, Thursday afternoon on the lawn of the Lake Region Public Library.

Theodore Roosevelt, portrayed by Montana actor Arch Ellwein, made an appearance in Devils Lake that won't soon be forgotten.
The crowd also found out that Roosevelt didn't like to be called “Teddy.” That didn't stop the man from bringing a teddy bear to Devils Lake Thursday afternoon.

By telling stories of his youth, the 26th President of the United States taught the crowd some very important lessons. Among them were the importance of staying active.

"I was a small and weak boy growing up. Suffering from asthma and wearing glasses at an early age, I was often teased," he said in a high-pitched voice. "But I kept moving, playing outside and even took up boxing. By keeping busy, I grew up to be big and strong."

The United States and North Dakota legend also spoke of many of his adventures including surviving a grizzly bear attack.
Some of Roosevelt's wildest stories, however, came from reading. At an early age, he took up books describing epic adventures.

"You never know what you are going to find, when you pop open a book," the former president pointed out. Roosevelt's love for books is displayed by the 35 titles he authored. "Reading is a key to a whole new world."

The final message he left the crowd with on that sunny afternoon was the important of making the most out of every situation.
"Live your life to the fullest," he said. "Play hard, but when you work, don't play. It's important to always give it your best."

Special presentation
Lake Region Public Library Director Jim Chattin pointed out that this is the third time Ellwein has traveled to Devils Lake to perform at the library.
Chattin notes that the professional actor is an excellent emoter that does a good job connecting with individuals of all age.

"He has so much energy," Chattin complimented. "You can tell that children were able to learn and take something away today."
The director noted that the presentation's lessons were extremely important for youngsters to take away.

"He had such a positive message to live life and the importance of reading and expanding your horizons at a young age," Chattin pointed out.
The event was made possible by the financial support of the Lake Region Arts Council.

"We can't thank the council enough for their support," he added. "Events like this are important for the community."

Sidebar:

Did you know? Some facts about T.R.
•President Theodore Roosevelt added Sullys Hill to the nation’s national park system on April 27, 1904.
•Roosevelt first came to North Dakota for a 15-day buffalo hunt in September of 1883.
•On Oct. 14, 1912 while campaigning in Milwaukee, Wis., Roosevelt was shot. The bullet lodged in his chest after passing through a jacket pocket containing his steel eyeglass case and a copy of his 50 page speech which was folded in half. He declined immediate treatment and went on to deliver a 90-minute speech with blood seeping from the wound into his shirt. Joking with the crowd he said, “I have been shot ... it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose.”