This summer, the Lodi Public Library is encouraging children, teens and adults to read with different programs centered around the theme of water. The programs could become even more important to keep children busy this summer if the Boys and Girls Club temporarily closes.
Because of the economy, the club's donations have dwindled, and it could shut its doors for the summer starting June 1.
The board will meet tonight to discuss the funding problem again and hold a vote, said Richard Jones, president and CEO of the club.
Children's librarian Jim Tinder said he had 800 children participate in the reading program last year, with 255 children finishing the challenge of 12 hours of reading.
"I think it would be a good fill-in for children used to going to the Boys and Girls Club," Tinder said. "The library is open six days a week, and they can win some prizes while having fun."
The library will have programs and events starting with the summer reading club kickoff event on May 27 and ending with a party on July 31.
Here's a brief breakdown of the programs:
- Children up to 12 years old: Children will need to pick up a packet from the library with a reading log and stickers. For every 15 minutes a child reads or has someone read to them, they can add a sticker to the log.
Every time a child reaches 3 hours, they can bring in the log and receive a prize, like a sandal keychain or beach balls that can be drawn on before inflating.
Once they reach 12 hours, they will receive a gift certificate for pizza at Round Table Pizza. Tinder said he also has a limited amount of prizes left over from past years, so if a child wants to read even more than 12 hours, there could be extra prizes.
There also will be story times and events centered around the theme "Make a splash. Read!" On May 27, the kickoff event will feature The Puppet Art Theater at 3:30 p.m.
- Teens aged 12-18: For teens, the theme is "Make waves at your library." The goal is for teens to discuss how they can make changes beneficial to the community and the environment, said Behjat Kerdegari, reference and young adult librarian.
For this age group, the goal is to read two books during the summer. After finishing the first one, they can win lanyards and necklaces with a flip flop or a surfboard. Once they finish the second book, they can select from a book shelf of second-hand books.
After teens finish the books, Kerdegari is asking them to write a paragraph about what they thought to put on the city of Lodi website. There will also be an art and writing contest for teens to focus on issues surrounding water, such as water pollution or the water shortage. The prizes are $50 and $75.
- Adults: The focus of the "Sail Ho!" adult group will be to get people to read books from the 1500s to 1800s. Topics will focus on pirates, whaling, Navy battles and other sea-themed fiction or non-fiction books.
Every time someone completes a book, they can get a raffle ticket for prizes like a gift certificate to Red Lobster, books signed by the author or bottles of wine.
Reference librarian Sandra Smith said she hopes the theme will attract more men. The library will have Caroline Cox give a presentation on May 25. She is the associate professor chair for the history department at the University of the Pacific.
She also would like to have the group go visit the Balclutha at the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park.