PUNXSUTAWNEY — The Punxsutawney Memorial Library will kick off its free summer reading program, “Dream Big, Read!” with an opening party from 2 to 4 p.m. Wednesday at the library.
Among the highlights of the party will be two alpacas, games and other activities. Youngsters from ages one-and-a-half years to tweens (ages nine to 12) can also register for the program, which officially begins Wednesday, June 20.
The schedule is as follows:
• Wednesday, June 20 — Nocturnal Animals, with events at 10 a.m. for wee ones (ages one-and-a-half to three years, three to five years); 2 p.m. for elementary-age children (ages five to nine years); and 3 p.m. for tweens (nine to 12 years, with teen activities).
• Wednesday, June 27 — Sleeping and Relaxing.
• Week of July 4 — No activities in observation of the Groundhog Festival and Fourth of July.
• Wednesday, July 11 — Dreams and Wishes.
• Wednesday, July 18 — Stars and Space Travel.
• Wednesday, July 25 — Scary Stories to Go Bump in the Night.
• Wednesday, Aug. 1 — Pajama Party, and the last day to log books.
• Wednesday, Aug. 8 — Party at the Pool. Must read 10 books to be invited.
During the program — which is open to anyone in the Punxsutawney Area School District (including Indiana County) of all ages and abilities — children pledge to read at least 10 books from the library over the summer, and they will record each title on a reading log, either at the library or via the online reading log.
The Wednesday get-togethers meet via age group to discuss books, make crafts and other activities. The weekly activities also give parents time to chat with their children about reading and help them find other great books to read.
If your child is under 10, please accompany your child to these events. Parents may take part with their children, or they can explore the library on their own.
There will also be events for teens — called “Own the Night” — this summer at the library. See the box above.
Studies have shown that summer reading programs are the best way for children to learn to love reading, which also keeps their brains active and ready to enter school in the fall, ready to learn and succeed.
For more information, call the library at 938-5020.