Local libraries offer free Summer Reading Programs


BUCKHANNON — Don’t let the summer slump take its toll on your kids this summer! Two libraries in Buckhannon will be offering Summer Reading Programs to keep kids engaged and interested over the summer months, for free. Even reading for entertainment purposes can reportedly help prevent summertime learning lag.

The Charles W. Gibson Library will be offering two programs this year—one for ages 7 and under and another for ages 8 and up. The theme for these programs offered by Charles W. Gibson Library and Upshur County Public Library is “Tails & Tales,” where children will learn about the environment and the creatures that live within. There are prizes associated with completion and participation for each program.

The two libraries are completely separate and kids are encouraged to participate in both programs. The Upshur County Public Library’s program begins June 1 and concludes July 1, 2021. This summer reading adventure is intended for readers of all ages and abilities, and will include outdoor activities, prizes and weekly “I Spy” challenges. Participants will earn points for each minute spent reading and for every 50 points, readers will earn a ticket for a prize. Participants need to track their reading on paper or online via the ReadSquared app on a smart phone.

The Charles W. Gibson Library program begins June 14 and concludes August 7, as the schedule is based on two-week increments. Participants will begin reading about protecting the environment and the animals that can be protected right in their own backyards. June 28-July 10, kids will learn about the various animal companions “with whom we share our homes and hearts.” July 12-24 will be all about the savannahs, jungles and oceans. Kids will read about the many different habitats and exotic animals that call these ecosystems home. Lastly, July 26-August 7, kids will read about the legendary creatures throughout different literature and mythology.

For ages 8 and up, there will be scheduled in-house programming events; however, if socially distanced crafts are preferred, participants can also take a craft kit home with them and complete it there. June 22 will be “upcycled art,” June 28-July 9 will be “we rate pets,” “animal magnets” will take place on July 19, and “character design” will take place August 2.

Readers can stop by the library at any time to pick up the themed craft kits and participate in activities to complete their game board and earn their prize pack. Participating kids age 7 and under will earn game pieces all summer long that will help them earn their prize packet at the end of the program. Director of Charles W. Gibson Library, Catherine Norko noted that the prize will consist of a certificate for completion, in addition to a tote bag loaded with several goodies. Readers ages 8 and up will be eligible for two different prize drawings and a grand prize will be given to the child with the most diligent participation, which will take place August 8. For this drawing, each book read and each trivia question answered will earn one entry into the drawing—more participation equates to more chances to win!

Registration for the Charles W. Gibson Library’s Tails & Tales program will begin June 1. Registration forms for the programs can be found at each of the libraries. Norko encourages readers to participate in this program, in addition to the reading program through the Upshur County Public Library. The programs are completely separate and will entail a variety of concepts to keep young readers engaged in learning while having fun.

The Charles W. Gibson Library is open Monday-Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. They will be closed June 21 for West Virginia Day, as well as Saturday, July 3 and Monday, July 5, in observance of Independence Day. The Upshur County Public Library is open Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Norko expressed, “Summer reading is one of my favorite things to do. I did it as a kid and I loved every minute of it. I encourage kids to continue doing it.”

Stop by either library, or better yet, both libraries, to grab a registration form and provide your kids the opportunity to participate in this Summer Reading Program that will encourage engagement and creativity while they’re out of school.

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