summer reading 1

Noah Johnson, 7, left, reads with his brother Joshua, 9, at the Solano County Library in Fairfield, May 23. (Aaron Rosenblatt/Daily Republic)


Library summer reading program kicks off hot season

By From page A1 | June 02, 2014

FAIRFIELD — Play in the snow, dare a friend to do something or kick back outdoors and simply read a book, and then another book and then another.

All are factors in this year’s Solano County Library’s summer reading program – a summer ritual for many children.

“It’s one of the most successful programs that libraries have had through the history of libraries,” said Kevin Tolley, the youth services librarian at Vacaville’s Town Square branch. “It helps millions of kids read more over the summer and in turn, it helps retain more (knowledge) . . . and just have a little bit of fun over the summer.”

The younger children will focus on gears this year, with the game-board theme, Fizz Boom Read.

Think of Candy Land, as the children fill in a space for every 30 minutes they read. After 15 spaces are filled, they bring the game board in to any library branch and receive a prize. They receive a book when the completed game board is turned in. Interspersed within the game board are optional challenges, such as attending a library event or doing a science experiment.

A major focus this year in the Solano County library system is increasing teen participation in the program, so the librarians went straight to the source to find out what they wanted to do. Tolley said teen participation is steady at his branch, but they wanted more.

The result is the countywide library Dare board that allows teens to set dares for themselves and challenge others to dares. The board offers up the words, “The challenge is yours. You’ve just been served.”

Dares can range from reading a book, a classic, planning a library event, taking a hike, making candy and so on. Dares can be offered and completed online at www.solanolibrary.com/teens or at the Dare board at the local libraries.

One of the largest setbacks to teen participation in the past has been transportation to the library, so librarians decided to open an online component, said Ann Miller, the Solano County Library’s community relations officer.

Of course, there are incentives – a new book for the first two dares completed and every dare after offers a chance to win an iPad Mini.

As Beth Molyneaux, the young adult library associate at Vacaville’s Cultural Center location, went around doing outreach to schools to promote the summer reading program, she said the iPad Mini definitely piqued the interest of the teens. The outreach, she said, was to ensure the kids were “aware of the program coming up” and the various activities associated with summer reading.

Paired with reading, each library branch offers dozens of events throughout the summer – Molyneaux said the projects make the library more visible.

“It generates positive excitement, she said.

Each branch has its own events for children and teens, ensuring a busy summer for those interested in “branch hopping” to the various libraries in Solano County. Teen events include an ice cream social, candle-making, duct-tape crafts, Inventors Lab, and yes, playing in the snow at the library in the middle of the summer. Children’s events include Busy Bee Dogs, magicians, petting zoos, jugglers and magic.

“Why wouldn’t you want to come to all these cool things going on?” Tolley said. “It seems to me, it’s the place to be.”

The reading program runs from June 9 until Aug. 9.

Reach Susan Winlow at 427-6955 or [email protected] Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/swinlowdr.

June children’s events by branch

Fairfield Cordelia – all events 10:30 a.m.

  • June 13, Busy Bee Dogs (www.theatricaldogs.com)
  • June 20, Puppet Art Theater’s Tommy’s Pirate Adventure
  • June 27, ZunZun Music and Games

Fairfield Civic Center – all programs 3:30 p.m.

  • June 11, Mad Science Fun Stations
  • June 18, Jeremy the Juggler
  • June 25, ZunZun Music and Games

Rio Vista – all programs 3 p.m.

  • June 11, The Magic of Gerald Joseph
  • June 18, ZunZun Music and Games
  • June 25, Maddie Koglar Art for Kids/Teens
  • June 26, Inventor’s Lab, Lawrence Hall of Science

Suisun City – all programs 10:30 a.m.

  • June 11, Owen Baker-Flynn Juggling and Magic
  • June 18, Busy Bee Dogs (www.theatricaldogs.com)
  • June 25, X-treme Science Magic with Don O’Brien

Vacaville-Cultural Center – all shows 3:30 p.m.

  • June 10, Owen Baker-Flynn Juggling and Magic
  • June 17, The Bubble Lady
  • June 24, Tony Border’s Puppets-Critters and Continents
  • June 27-28, Stuffed animal sleepover

Vacaville-Town Square – all events 4 p.m.

  • June 12, Kickoff party (cake, ice cream and reading program signups)
  • June 19, Sharon’s Mobile Petting Zoo
  • June 26, ZunZun Music and Games

Teen events by branch

Fairfield Cordelia – all events 3 p.m.

  • June 12, Ice Cream social
  • Games, crafts all summer
  • July 31, end-of-summer party

Fairfield Civic Center – all events 3:30 p.m.

  • June 12, Kickoff party, smoothie making workshop
  • June 26, Candle-making workshop
  • July 10, Inventor’s Lab, circuitry
  • July 24, Game On

Rio Vista – all events 3 p.m.

  • June 25, Maddie Koglar Art for Teens/Kids
  • July 16, Duct-tape crafts
  • July 31, Smoothies
  • Aug. 8, Inventor’s Lab. Lawrence Hall of Science

Suisun Library – all events 6 p.m.

  • June 19, Icebreakers and making powerballs
  • June 26, Zumba, dance and food talk
  • July 10, Workout play, old-school games and food talk
  • July 17, Potluck and old- school games
  • July 24, Ice cream science and party with DJ Uppercutz

Vacaville-Cultural Center – events 3:30 p.m. unless noted

  • June 11, Duct-tape arts and crafts
  • June 25, Recycled jar candle-making
  • July 9, Tie-dye T-shirts
  • Aug. 1, Murder mystery night (6 p.m.)

Vacaville-Town Square –events 3:30 p.m. unless noted

  • June 17, 1990s cartoon marathon
  • July 8, Candle-making
  • July 12, Rock ‘n Read (11 a.m.)
  • July 22, Snow day
  • Aug. 5, Mystery magic show

Discussion | 2 comments

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  • CD BrooksJune 02, 2014 - 6:45 am

    The summer reading program is a great opportunity for getting kids out from in front of the TV and video games, socializing and learning in the process. My wife is a huge advocate for kids reading. She has been buying the kids books since they were infants reading to and with them. Our grandson completing Kindergarten read 100 thousand words this year. Our granddaughter finishing third grade read 1 Million words. We are extremely proud for their accomplishments but even happier with their ability to read and the benefits they get from it. .

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  • Typical County WorkerJune 02, 2014 - 8:10 am

    If you can't make it to the library, you should check out the two little free libraries in Fairfield. I know the one on Nevada Street usually is stocked with children's books as well as other age appropriate reading. It sits on top of a wine barrel about in the middle of the block. The other one is on Delaware Street, close to Pennsylvania. Both also accept donations of books if you have some to give.

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