By Frank Lewis
Reading is something children should do year round, but sometimes there is a tendency to slack off that practice in the summertime, which is why the Portsmouth Public Library offers the Summer Reading Program. Saturday, the reward for those who participated took place on the grounds of the main library on Gallia Street in Portsmouth.
“What we’re trying to do is promote reading during the summer,” Lisa Lavender, Youth Services Supervisor at the Portsmouth Public Library, said. “We want kids not to backslide when they’re out of school and they may or may not feel like reading. So we’re trying to give them a reason to want to read. So we give away prizes. We give away books and we do programming during the summer. So we’re trying to get them into the library and get them to want to read.”
Lavender was surrounded by inflatables and other games as well as families eager to sign their kids up for a full day of activities.
“We’re having our Summer Reading Carnival Finale,” Lavender said. “It’s for everyone actually, but we are especially wanting people who came to the library during the summer and participated in the program.”
Lavender said there were a lot of incentives to participate in Saturday’s event.
“We’re giving away tickets to Camden Park today. We’re giving away a couple of Long’s Retreat tickets,” Lavender said. “We have a speaker, Dr. John Becker who is with us and he’s going to do a presentation for us.”
Becker is an author from Delaware, Ohio, who worked with Jack Hanna at the Columbus Zoo for several years. Becker also does conservation work in Africa.
Inside the library, each part of the children’s department was filled with kids going through the various projects and playing games.
“It’s just kind of a thank you for everybody for participating in summer reading,” lavender said.
Frank Lewis can be reached at 740-353-3101, Ext. 1928, or on Twitter @FrankLewispdt.