‘A Universe of Stories’: Harford County Public Library Launches Summer Reading Challenge June 17

The program runs through August 31 and is for children of all ages to encourage continued learning that inspires a lifetime love of reading. In 2018, nearly 17,000 children and teens participated in the Summer Reading Challenge, and they read 120,485 books, which was 3,500 more than the previous year’s participants.

Early registration is available online at HCPLonline.org. Participants may also register at any Harford County Public Library branch starting June 17. Upon registering, each participant will receive a tote bag, a reading log and coupon offers from sponsors (while supplies last). For those who register online, they are welcome to pick up their registration materials at any Harford County Public Library location starting June 17.

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.

Completed logs may be returned between July 8-August 31.

After turning in their logs of books read, participants will receive a completion gift (while supplies last), certificate and a voucher for a free ticket to an Aberdeen IronBirds game redeemable on July 9 or 26 or August 4 or 30.

The public elementary, middle and high schools with the highest percentage of Summer Reading Challenge completers will win a trophy.

The Summer Reading Challenge kicks off with events and activities on June 17 at the Bel Air Library from 10 a.m. to noon and at the Havre de Grace Library from 1 to 4 p.m.

Numerous Summer Reading Challenge events will take place throughout the summer and include visits from Mike Rose–Magic That Came From Outer Space; Susquehannock Wildlife Society; CTR Changing Lives Presents: Pony Express–Trails and Tales; ScienceTellers–Aliens: Escape from Earth; Storyteller Diane Macklin; Eric Energy–Space Science Spectacular!; EcoAdventures: Aliens Among Us!; Extreme Balloon Man–Seeking Treasures; Mr. Jon and The Franklin Institute–Life in Space. Visit HCPLonline.org for dates, times and registration information.

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.

“Our Summer Reading Challenge theme, ‘A Universe of Stories,’ really is out of this world,” said Mary Hastler, CEO of Harford County Public Library. “The library is proud to offer many exciting books on this theme for children and teens. In addition, we are hosting fun-filled events for customers of all ages so that they can explore the universe, from ScienceTellers–Aliens: Escape from Earth to Eric Energy–Space Science Spectacular! to The Franklin Institute–Life in Space. We are so grateful to our generous sponsors for their help in making this year’s Summer Reading Challenge an exceptional summer-long experience for our customers.”

Summer Reading Challenge sponsors include the Aberdeen Ironbirds, Harford County Public Library Foundation, Bel Air Friends of Harford County Public Library, Klein’s ShopRite, Rosedale Federal Savings & Loan, Harford Day School, HAR-CO Credit Union, Maryland 529, Aberdeen Rotary Club, Wegmans, APG Federal Credit Union, The John Carroll School, M&T Bank, Berardino Family Trust, Darlington Friends of HCPL and Huether-McClelland Foundation.

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 locations.

Harford County Public Library operates 11 branches located throughout Harford County. More than 1.6 million visitors use library services and resources each year. In 2018 Harford County Public Library was named one of America’s Star Libraries for the eighth time by Library Journal.  This year, Harford County Public Library received the Maryland Library Association’s first Excellence in Marketing Award. For more information, visit HCPLonline.org.