MASSENA — This year’s Massena Public Library summer reading program, which runs from July 6 to Aug. 14 at the libraries in Massena and Brasher Falls, will look vastly different than years past as library officials adapt to the mandates issued by the state as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The goal remains the same — encouraging children to continue reading during summer vacation so they don’t lose valuable reading skills. But, instead of in-person activities at the library, such as Storytime sessions, most activities will be held virtually in a collaborative effort with other libraries in the North Country Library System.
“Most stuff is going to be online in a couple of different formats,” youth services librarian Ronnie Tatro said.
For example, Storytime sessions will be held live at 10 a.m. Mondays on the Massena library Facebook page and 10 a.m. Tuesdays on the Brasher library’s Facebook page, while the Tween Book Club will be held via Google Hangouts.
But, there will also be some non-digital activities called “Side Walk Shenanigans.”
A Fairy Tale board Game that will be set up on Monday allows individuals who are walking through Massena to stop by the sidewalk near the library to see if they can make it through a chalk fairy tale board game by dodging trolls, hopping on mushrooms and making it to the castle before they’re turned into a frog.
A Magic Maze will be set up on July 20, again on the sidewalk near the library, where visitors “follow the dizzying magical maze. Follow the instructions as you spin your way through.”
And, on Aug. 3, the sidewalk becomes a game of “What’s That Book?” Visitors check out chalk-drawn pictures and guess what book they’re from based on the clues that are given. Then they can call, send an email or send a Facebook message with the correct answers, which will be announced on Aug. 5.
“We’ll leave them up for a week. You can come by as you’re walking through town and do it,” Ms. Tatro said.
Storytime participants can also enjoy take-and-make “Creation Station” crafts on Wednesdays until Aug. 12. They can pick up a craft bag that’s filled with supplies and instructions to make the craft. The supplies have been quarantined for seven days before they’re distributed.
The weekly crafts include Fairy Garden on July 8, Easy Origami Crowns on July 15, Jack and the Bean Stalk Spirals on July 22, Frog Prince Paper Plate With Moveable Tongue on July 29, 3 Little Pigs House Build on Aug. 5, and Make Your Own (Cardboard) Shield on Aug. 12. Supplies are on a first-come, first-served basis and limited to two per family each week.
“We’ve already started giving away our Storytime bags this week,” Ms. Tatro said.
Other activities include a Tween Book Club for ages 10 to 12 on Mondays; Roll for Initiative Dungeons & Dragons sessions for ages 13 to 17 on Tuesdays and Thursdays; Elementary Read Along for ages 8 and up on Wednesdays; Learning Garden Live for all ages on Thursdays; and Drawing Challenge for a ages 5 to 8, 9 to 12 and 13 to 17 on Thursdays.
She said readers will have an opportunity to participate in the weekly live Elementary Read Along and, if they leave a book review, they’ll earn a Stewart’s ice cream certificate or Taco Bell burrito or cinnamon twist.
Readers 18 and over will have an opportunity to use READsquared (www.readsquared.com) and connect with other adults in the community. Registering for READsquared will earn points to get an entry into an adult prize drawing, as will leaving book reviews on books the person has read.
“We’ve already had adults leaving reviews on books that they’ve read,” Ms. Tatro said.
For more information about the summer reading program, visit www.massenapubliclibrary.org, the library’s Facebook page, or call 315-769-9914.