Summer vacation may be on the horizon, but that doesn’t mean kids should bid adieu to reading. Why? Regular reading keeps academic skills sharp, inspires curiosity, enhances comprehension and vocabulary, and best of all, puts in place the habit for young people to become lifelong readers and learners. In an effort to encourage the whole family to read, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings is kicking off the Mayor’s Summer Reading Club, an eight-week program powered by community participation, weekly incentive prizes and all-around fun from June 15 – August 10. Registration opens on Sunday, May 19, and kick-off celebrations are slated for Saturday, June 15, at eight library locations throughout Dallas. All 29 Dallas Public Library locations as well as the Dallas Public Library’s Bookmobile will participate.
Presented by Walmart, the Mayor’s Summer Reading Club is free and open to all ages. Register online at dallaslibrary.org or in person at any Dallas library location.
Each week, participating young club members will have a chance to win an incentive prize by reporting what they read to any Dallas Public Library location. Children 7 and older are asked to read at least five hours per week, and children 6 and under are required to read three hours per week to earn a weekly prize. Two of the weekly prizes will include a new book for Reading Club participants up to 18 years of age. All readers may report any reading material including books, e-books, audio books and magazines.
There is one grand-prize drawing for children and two grand-prize drawings for adult participants in the program. With a “write, create, participate” focus, entries into the grand prize drawings for the four 18 and under age-group categories can be earned by reading extra hours, attending library events, writing book reviews, or illustrating book characters, to name a few. Adults will earn entries by logging their reading.
For more than 40 years, the Dallas Public Library’s summer reading program has encouraged kids to read during the summer months. In 1997, the program became known as the Mayor’s Summer Reading Program and has since served over 230,000 children. This year, two big changes will paint a whole new look for the summertime program. First, the program takes on a new name – the Mayor’s Summer Reading Club. Secondly, because kids follow the example set by parents and family members, the Reading Club becomes a family affair that’s fun for all ages.
The Mayor’s Summer Reading Club is a collaborative effort between the City of Dallas Mayor’s Office, the Dallas Public Library, Dallas ISD and dozens of community sponsors and donors.
The June 15 kick-off celebrations will be held at eight Dallas Library branches – Timberglen, Bachman Lake, White Rock Hills and Polk Wisdom from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., and Central Children’s Center, North Oak Cliff, Prairie Creek and Bookmarks at Northpark from 2 – 4 p.m.