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Harford County Public Library’s Summer Reading Challenge for children kicks off June 19 with the theme, “Build a Better World.”
The program runs through September 2 and is geared for children of all ages to encourage continued learning that inspires a lifetime love of reading. In 2016, more than 16,000 children and teens participated in the Summer Reading Challenge, and they read more than 111,000 books.
Early registration is available online at hcplonline.org. Participants may also register at any Harford County Public Library branch starting June 19. Each registered reader will receive a commemorative tote bag filled with Summer Reading Challenge sponsors’ information and coupons.
To participate, children from birth through Pre-K are asked to read or listen to 25 books. Those entering kindergarten through fifth grade are asked to read 10 books. Middle and high school students are asked to read three books.
Upon completion, all receive a certificate and a special gift (while supplies last). In addition, all children who complete the program in time will receive a ticket voucher to an Aberdeen IronBirds game for either August 8 or August 24.
The Summer Reading Challenge kicks off with events and activities on June 19. Starting at the Bel Air Library from 10 a.m. to noon, library customers have the opportunity to be part of Lapsit or Wiggle story time and can meet the Aberdeen IronBirds’ Ripcord. Summer Reading Challenge sponsors will be on hand to celebrate and provide giveaways. In the afternoon, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Edgewood Library, the Maryland Zoo is presenting a special animal program, and sponsors will be on hand to offer exciting giveaways.
Other Summer Reading Challenge events will take place throughout the coming months including visits from Mr. Jon, We Cancerve, Franklin Institute Traveling Science Show, Magician Mike Rose, FutureMakers, Harford County Sheriff’s K-9 Unit, Didgeridoo Down Under and more. Visit hcplonline for dates and times.
Studies show that children who participate in public library summer reading programs score higher on reading achievement tests at the beginning of the new school year, experience less summer reading loss and begin the school year with more confidence.
“Children who read throughout the summer months maintain their reading level when school begins again in the fall,” said Mary Hastler, CEO of Harford County Public Library. “In addition, this year’s theme of ‘Build a Better World’ will ignite children’s imaginations to make our world, our community, an even better one. There is no limit on their imaginations and possibilities.”
The Summer Reading Challenge is funded through sponsor contributions, donations from Library Friends’ groups and by funds raised by the Harford County Public Library Foundation.
Read to Me Sponsors (for children ages birth through Pre-K) are Aberdeen IronBirds, APGFCU, Bel Air Friends of Harford County Public Library, Darlington Friends of Harford County Public Library, Harford Day School and M & T Bank.
Elementary Sponsors (for children entering kindergarten through fifth grade) are Aberdeen IronBirds, Growing Smiles, HAR-CO, Harford Day School, Huether-McClelland Foundation, Jarrettsville Federal Savings and Loan Association and Maryland 529.
Middle and High School Sponsors (for middle and high schoolers) are Aberdeen IronBirds, Aberdeen Rotary Club, Advanced Eye Care, Berardino Family Trust, Rosedale Federal Savings & Loan, Harford Community College and Wegmans.
More information may be found at hcplonline.org or by picking up a copy of the Headlines & Happenings newsletter at any of the library’s branches.
Harford County Public Library operates 11 branches located throughout Harford County. The library serves more than 185,000 registered borrowers of all ages and has an annual circulation of more than 3.8 million. Harford County Public Library is committed to connecting people with information and promoting the love of reading in the community. For more information, visit hcplonline.org.