The system on Friday began registration for its summer reading programs. Young visitors to any of the three library branches can register for the "Make a Splash -- Read!" while teens can enroll in their reading campaign, "Make Waves at your Library."
"We're making big boats out of shoeboxes, and of course, we have 'Pirate Day,' which is ocean related -- we'll be doing some pirate games, doing some pirate ship races and all kinds of fun stuff, too," Youth Services Coordinator Thomas Shalin said regarding the water-related theme of the children's campaign. "And a lot of crafts during the week for storytime will be ocean themed, water themed.
"You don't necessarily have to do all your storytimes and programming based on the theme, but this is a pretty fun theme to do. You can kind of go wild with it," Shalin added.
Both youth reading campaigns offer participants an opportunity to earn rewards -- younger patrons can receive stickers, prizes and books for their reading, while teens can be entered into gift card drawings for hitting the books.
While young library visitors can enroll in their respective programs this week and throughout the summer, programs to be held in conjunction with the campaigns will kick off next week. All three branches will play host to the "Circus Fanta-Sea" puppet show featuring Lee Bryan Wednesday, June 2. Children can see the performance at the Emmie Nelson Public Library in Euharlee at 10:30 a.m., the Cartersville Public Library at 1 p.m., and the Adairsville Public Library at 3:30 p.m.
Visits from animals and their handlers, craft projects and musical programs are among the activities children will have to choose from this summer.
"The most important part of [the campaign] is to get kids excited about reading over the summer," Shalin said. "It keeps them academically on target, because there's a big tendency to slip behind if kids don't read over the summer months, so it's just a way for them to keep going. And some of them have already finished [the program requirements] -- some kids have been reading all weekend."
Teens will be able to play video games at the Cartersville Public Library Tuesday, June 1, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. It is the first event on a summer schedule
that also includes craft sessions, a class on HTML programming and even a library scavenger hunt.
"With teens, you want them to come to the library to kind of do something fun, hang out at the library -- when it comes to the summer, they just kind of want some things to do," Shalin said. "We're inspiring them to keep reading by giving them a program where they can actually get prizes for reading as well, but for most of them, we don't have the same sort of literacy bent with teens as we do for the younger ones with storytimes and those kinds of programs. It's more teens come and maybe use the library ... as a place to maybe meet friends and also to pick up a book they've been looking for, maybe read a magazine, maybe go on the computer or experience something new."
"READiscover Your Library" is the theme for the Adult Summer Reading Program. Adults who register for the reading campaign, read three books and attend one program will earn one entry for the grand prize, an iPod nano. A prize basket filled with books, DVDs and more also will be given away at each of the library branches.
Events held in conjunction with the adult campaign will have participants learning about staying fit, fiscally in shape and having fun, with other programs covering a wide range of topics.
Kicking off adult events will be the weekly "Chi-Fit" sessions at the Cartersville Public Library. Sue Hopkins of Etowah Valley Yoga will lead participants through gentle motions every Tuesday beginning June 1, from 10 to 10:40 a.m.
"Besides the fact that we do have books on each of those [topics], a library is more about continuing lifelong learning, and Chi-Fit is another aspect of learning something new," said Colleen Knight, Adult Services coordinator for the library system.
The Adairsville Public Library will host a session on identity theft protection Thursday, June 3, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. For those looking for something to do that night in Cartersville, library visitors there can learn to play "Go" as part of the system's monthly stop on its "Japanese Cultural Tour"; teens can also take part in the program.
The Cartersville branch on Saturday, June 5, will hold a session on quilling, the art of creating decorative designs from thin strips of curled paper, from 10 a.m. to noon.
"A lot of people, when people think of the library, they think of books. We want to emphasize that we're about more than just books," Knight said. "We're about DVDs, we're about music, we're about programming and computers. There's just more to us now than just the old-fashioned stereotype of books, though they have plenty of those."
Knight said the library will be emphasizing next month utilization of audiobooks, which can be downloaded from the system's website. Adults who download an audiobook through the library and give feedback about their experience will receive credit for participation in a summer program. The focus is due to June being National Audiobook Month.
A complete list of summer events for children and adults can be found on the library system's website, www.bartowlibraryonline.org. Event listings also will appear in The Daily Tribune News throughout the summer.