by WYNNE LOVE | photos by Zeena Gregg Photography

When Zara Irshad, a fifth grader at Willow Grove Elementary School, was invited to help host the radio show, “Kathryn the Grape’s Magical Hour,” she was delighted. Kathryn the Grape – a vivacious young girl who loves to wear purple – takes readers along on her adventures in the new book series bearing her name.

“I love Kathryn the Grape’s bubbly outgoing personality,” said Zara. “She is such a good role model to children and makes everyone believe in themselves and feel magical and special.” Inspired by the childhood nickname of author Kathryn Cloward, Kathryn the Grape uses her magic wand and her own clever thinking to help her feel brave and trust her intuition while making new friends and trying new things.

Now Zara shares those same strategies with Kathryn the Grape’s fans every Wednesday at noon on the VoiceAmerica Kids Channel. “I have always enjoyed expressing my opinions and helping and advising others,” said Zara, “so when the opportunity came up for co-hosting the radio show, I felt it was a perfect fit for me.”

Joined by her best friend Audrey Koepke, as co-host, Zara interviews special guests and helps prepare her own segments for the hour-long broadcast. Her biggest challenge is splitting her time between the radio show, Girl Scouts, karate, and her schoolwork. But it’s been worth it. With her own sights set on becoming a singer/songwriter one day, Zara was especially excited to get the opportunity to be a back-up singer on the new Kathryn the Grape album.

“The goal of Kathryn the Grape is to help children develop authentic self-love and see themselves as perfect, one-of-a-kind, magical individuals,” said Cloward. Kathryn’s messages have been well-received, earning her the radio show last fall and a Mom’s Choice Award in February. Now with the music CD and a third book coming out this summer, Cloward has high hopes for the future of Kathryn the Grape. In the meantime, her greatest joy comes from sharing her messages of positive self-worth with kids throughout San Diego.

Kathryn the Grape® Children’s Books, Music and Messages of Love, Kindness and Adventure can be found by visiting www.kathrynthegrape.com.