This photo shows just one of the children enjoying the Take & Make Crafts distributed in lieu of in-library programs this past summer. Photo provided by Mendon Public Library

Lots of reading, creating, and imagining happened outside the Mendon Public Library this summer due to the library’s Summer Reading Program. “Imagine Your Story” was the theme of this summer’s program. Feedback from patrons young and not so young indicated that the reading, creating, and imagining that resulted from this year’s COVID-retooled Summer Reading Program was top notch.

Due to the pandemic, the Summer Reading Program looked a lot different this year. Mendon Public Library patrons still participated in reading and creating, but, gone were the specially planned programs that in the past have attracted crowds to the library. Instead, patrons of all ages participated in special challenges that encouraged self-guided exploration in moving, creating, writing, producing, cooking and “take and make” crafts.

Children under 11-years-old who checked out books each week were rewarded with a lanyard and prize buttons, all fantasy and fairy tale themed. Kids also could participate in the reading program by completing a Reading Log and earning a book to keep. Teens submitted book reviews and two lucky winners (Rachael Garvey and Macy Letendre) took home a $25 Visa Gift Card. Lynn Albright won the adult prize for the adult book review drawing, a $50 gift card to HFMP/MMMP.

Patrons of all ages were encouraged to participate in our Summer Reading Program Challenge Board. Library staff curated a variety of Take & Make crafts, cooking, moving, and other creative endeavors. Each week we were able to award prizes randomly to folks who participated. Unicorn masks, museum passes, and a karaoke machine were just some of the prizes awarded.

Overall, nearly 800 buttons were distributed to kids checking out books, 350 “Take and Make” Crafts were distributed, and 33 reading logs were turned in representing 520 books and 18,701 minutes (over 300 hours) of reading! Tiffany Leader, a library student at St. John Fisher, offered a variety of online program options for kids. Additionally, HFL Teens, Ellie Fairchild and Ivy Yates presented virtual programs that ranged from Brain Teasers to Slime!

The Mendon Public Library offers the Summer Reading Program to the community thanks to generous grants from Honeoye Falls Market Place, Mendon Meadows Market Place, M&T Bank, and support from the Friends of the Mendon Public Library. In addition, the library is incredibly thankful to all our fantastic volunteers. This year’s volunteers included adults Tiffany Leader, Cathy Rawlins, and Pat Seischab and teens Ellie Fairchild, Abby Garvey, Rachael Garvey, Summer Sonricker, Ava Stern, and Ivy Yates. THANK YOU to everyone who helped us “Imagine Your Story”!

Next summer’s program theme is “Tails and Tales” focused on animals in stories.

©2020 MHFL Sentinel

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