MINNEAPOLIS (May 25, 2011) – Hundreds of free programs for kids and teens will be presented at Hennepin County Library’s 41 libraries beginning in mid-June and continuing through August as part of the Library’s “Bookawocky” summer programming.
“Bookawocky,” the summer program theme, is a whimsical nod to “Jabberwocky,” Lewis Carroll’s classic nonsense poem and ode to the imagination. “Bookawocky” programs are offered to inspire kids and teens to keep their minds and creativity sharp over the summer by picking up, downloading, or listening to books and enjoying fun literacy- and literary-based library programs.
“Jabberwocky” may be nonsensical, but the purpose of “Bookawocky” is not. “The Library is the perfect place for families and children of all ages to spend part of their summer,” said Hennepin County Library Director Lois Langer Thompson. “Research shows that children and teens who continue to read during the summer maintain and improve their reading skills so they are ready to learn when they return to school in the fall. Join us at a program, take home some great reading and have your best summer.”
June program highlights include book clubs for early elementary through the teen years; “Truck Stories,” with actual community vehicles on hand for close-up inspection; and anime and manga clubs and workshops. A variety of programs presented in partnership with Intermedia Arts, the Guthrie Theater, and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts are funded by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund. There are also short story writing and YouTube video contests; music and songs; a Mad Hatter tea party; bugs, raptors, and other wildlife; back-by-popular-demand programs featuring magicians, puppeteers, and yo-yo experts; and much more.
Online programs are on the itinerary for kids, too. Go to KidLinks (www.kidlinks.org) to participate in “Read. Write. Draw,” an opportunity to write short book reviews and perhaps win a free book. “Book Blast” on KidLinks gives kids a chance to share their know-how about books and authors. Online book clubs invite participation in June, July, and August.
There will be plenty of programs and activities for teens, too. In addition to lots of teen arts programs at the libraries, teens can attend a Teen Writers’ Conference at the Loft Literary Center presented in a Library collaboration with the Loft. Teens can also find out about great books and digital content via BookSpace (www.bookspace.org ) Summer is a perfect time to support the community by volunteering, and Hennepin County Library’s teen website, TeenLinks (www.teenlinks.org), offers links to lots of possibilities. Among them: HCL’s Teens Online volunteer group is recruiting new members. Soon, teens will discover that “Bookawocky” wrocks!
Many “Bookawocky” programs would not be possible without the support of community businesses and organizations. Many “Guys Read” book clubs, for example, are sponsored in part by the Ann and Jack Cole Children’s Fund. The Friends of the Library are helping fund many summer programs. North Star Therapy Animals sponsors “Paws to Read” sessions. The African American Men Project is collaborating on a chess club at North Regional Library. Foundations such as the Best Buy Children’s Foundation, Comcast Foundation, and the Library Foundation of Hennepin County are generously supporting many programs.
Ask your local library staff for “Bookawocky” reading records, bookmarks, library card holders, and pencils.
For the complete summer program schedule, go to www.hclib.org and click on Events & Classes. Search by library, type of program, age group, program date, or keyword.
For information on how you can support Hennepin County Library: www.hclib.org/pub/info/support.