WOOD RIVER | The Wood River Public Library is encouraging residents to “Read for the Win” during its summer reading program.
This summer’s event kicked off with a tailgate party June 11 in the library parking lot at 326 E. Ferguson Ave. Children and parents were invited for games, prizes and lunch provided by the Pump House with an ice cream treat donated by Prairie Farms.
“We want the kids to set goals and enjoy it as they try to achieve them,” Wood River Public Library Director Kate Kite said. “We don’t have the traditional library where everyone is so quiet you can hear a pin drop. We have life and interaction taking place in the library. This summer reading program will be fun for everyone.”
Children who don’t read during the summer can lose two months or more of learning by the time they return to school in the fall. Children who participate in summer reading programs and read a minimum of six books over the summer score higher in reading and math when they return to school.
“We are going with a sports theme this year, and athletes from East Alton-Wood River High School are coming in to volunteer for the event,” event organizer Lindsey Herron said. “We will be playing bags, washers, hillbilly golf, a strong man cut-out, jumbo bowling and a duck pond. We will have things going on both inside the library and outside.”
Four age brackets are in place for the summer program, including preschool, K-5, young adult and adult summer reading.
Preschool students will meet at 10 a.m. Tuesdays with Catrina Olendorff for stories, activities, crafts and a snack.
Laurel Galeener will work with kindergarten through fifth grade at 2 p.m. Tuesdays to complete a novel over the course of the summer, along with games and crafts.
The young adult group is made up of 6th to 12th graders, who will meet at 1:30 p.m. Thursdays with Kite. Young adults will have weekly activities and participate in a bingo game throughout the summer to earn prizes.
Adults can register for the Adult Summer Challenge and pick up a bag at the library with more information. Inside the Summer Challenge brochure will be a calendar of events and activities.
“We have something for everyone during the summer reading program,” Herron said. “The kids have so much fun and they build relationships. They get so much more than reading great books over the summer. The library is as busy as ever, and we always have something going on.”
As part of the summer reading program, a weekly performer will dazzle the children and their parents at 10 a.m. every Wednesday at the Wood River Round House, 633 N. Wood River Ave.
Visit woodriverlibrary.org for registration forms, times, events and information. The library is open 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. For information, call (618) 254-4832.