Clayton libraries to launch summer reading programs

Literary fans across Clayton County should probably be getting ready, if they have not already begun preparations, to get their reading on.

Clayton County’s library system has announced on its web site that it will begin its annual children’s summer reading programs on Saturday. The programs, which will run through Aug. 4, are designed to be big pushes to encourage young people to read as many books as they can throughout the summer months.

This year’s themes are “Dream Big — Read!” for young children and “Own the Night” for teenagers. Each of the library system’s branches are slated to host several activities throughout the summer for children and teenagers, to get them to come to the libraries, with the hope that they will check out books during their visits.

“Research has shown that reading over the summer break helps prevent students from losing ground and helps prepare them for the next school year,” library officials stated on system’s web site, www.claytonpl.org/.

One of the key components of the children’s and teenager summer reading programs are prizes for reading books. Participants must keep a log of their weekly reading, and they can earn a free book by either reading 18 books, or by spending at least 12 hours reading during the summer. The reading logs can be picked up at library branches.

One of the first big events scheduled to take place in conjunction with the summer reading programs is a flamenco dance demonstration and lessons for children ages 3 to 10, on May 23, from 11 a.m., to 11:45 a.m., at the Headquarters Branch, located at 865 Battle Creek Road, in Jonesboro.

Three other early summer reading program events are scheduled to take place Thursday, May 24, including:

• “ ‘Dreamy’ Stories with Ms. Jen,” from 10:30 a.m., to 11:15 a.m., at the Jonesboro Branch, located at 124 Smith Street, in Jonesboro.

• “Boogie Woogie Shake Shake,” from 10:30 a.m., to 11:30 a.m., at the Lovejoy Branch, located at 1721 McDonough Road, in Lovejoy.

• “Thursday Tales Storytime,” from 11 a.m., to noon, at the Morrow Branch, located at 6225 Maddox Road, in Morrow.

The library branches are slated to host other activities, such as magic shows, puppet shows, movie viewings, clown shows, storyteller presentations, reptile shows, Nintendo Wii gaming days, arts and crafts activities, self-defense classes and Fourth of July programs later in the summer.

The Headquarters branch is also scheduled to host its annual summer Scholastic Half-Off Book Sale from June 5 to June 11.

The library system is also slated to kick-off the adult version of the summer reading program, on June 2. The adult reading program’s theme is “Between the Covers.” Unlike the children’s programs, only the Clayton County Headquarters Library Branch, Lovejoy Branch and Riverdale Branch, are slated to host the adult summer reading program.

Call (770) 473-3850 for more information about the summer reading programs. Log onto www.claytonpl.org, for a full calendar of summer programs at each of the Clayton County Library System branches.