2016-08-25 / Editorial

Thanks for getting in the game

Library Links
By Brooke Faulkner

Life-size Pac Man and Jenga. An inflatable obstacle course. A Freestyle Frisbee Workshop by two-time World Frisbee Champion Todd Brodeur. These and other events were part of 2016’s Get in the Game Summer Reading Program at McArthur Public Library and were enjoyed by many of the 600-plus kids and teens who signed up for our annual summer program. Because kids shouldn’t have all the fun, we were also glad to tally readers’ accomplishments on punch cards and chat about favorite books with those who participated in our Adult Summer Reading program.

Summer reading is a big event in the library world. It’s both a celebration of the pastime of reading for pleasure and a great way to help young people stay in practice with reading outside of the academic year. However, people’s summers are often jam packed, so we emphasize keeping it simple and fun. To participate, people just read whatever they enjoy, kept track of it and checked in at the library throughout the summer for the opportunity to win prizes.

In Biddeford, we are tremendously fortunate that many local businesses generously support these endeavors by donating the prizes we give. Kids and teens receive a free pass to a Portland Sea Dogs game just for signing up for the program. As they make their way through summer, they are also able to earn a free Blizzard from Biddeford Dairy Queen and free pizza and fries from TJ’s Pizza. These serve as wonderful incentives for kids who might not otherwise read for fun and they are a delicious and welcome reward for all. For adults this year, gift certificates and prizes in-kind were donated by Hannaford Supermarket, Shaw’s Supermarket, Marden’s, All Day Breakfast, Sea Salt Restaurant, Martel’s Ice Cream, Jonesy’s Restaurant, Reny’s, Skipper’s Restaurant, New Morning Natural Foods, Cow Bell Restaurant, Sweet Cream Ice Cream and Trillium. Thank you to all for your support of literacy in your community, and thank you to all the readers who signed up.

Of course, the end of summer reading signals that fall is on its way, but it’s not upon us quite yet. For those still looking for that great summer read, remember we have great titles for all ages. Why not try Sarvenaz Tash’s, “The Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love”? This funny and romantic offering for teens features smart, snappy dialogue against the backdrop of a Comic Con. If mystery is more your speed, check out Irish author Tana French’s gritty, introspective “Dublin Murder Squad” series. Set in contemporary Dublin, each of these makes a minor character from the previous novel the focus of the next volume – the first is “In the Woods.” And kids looking for a gripping historical fiction title might want to check out the American home front during World War II in “Wolf Hollow” by Lauren Volk.

If none of these fits the bill, just come on by – there’s nothing we enjoy more than helping people find the book that’s right for them.

By Brooke Faulkner is teen services librarian at McArthur Public Library in Biddeford.

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