June 26th Newspaper Column

It’s Summer Reading Program time. Five weeks of special performers, craft days, story times, games, and fun for the whole family (and that definitely includes grandparents). Kids have three programs to choose from, and can earn items ranging from stickers to ice cream cones to tickets for a Timber Rattlers baseball game by reading and attending library programs.

Every year we get asked why participating in summer reading programs is such a big deal. Like almost any worthwhile endeavor, reading well takes practice. This is especially true for new readers. Elementary teachers can tell you all about “summer slide,” when children who haven’t read (or done any math) come back to school in the fall and struggle to get back to grade level. Summer reading programs help prevent summer slide. Parents of some participants find the small incentives we can offer (those stickers and pencils and ice cream coupons) to be just what is needed to get their children to take time out and read every week. The special programs and craft days are a way to celebrate reading, bring people into the library who may not be regular users, provide activity options when the weather precludes enjoying the outdoors, and are just plain fun. And we are firm believers in having fun at the library.

Stop in and get signed up for a summer reading program (or three). Our first special event happens Monday morning, June 30, when Noelle Tarrant brings some of her wild animal ambassadors to the library for a 10:00 program. Come back for crafts on Wednesday morning, LEGO Club Thursday morning, and/or story time on Friday morning. There’s always something to do at the library.