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June 11, 2013

Summer library programs go high-tech

By Terry Oparka
C & G Staff Writer

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Summer library programs go high-tech
Emma Dorn, of Troy, chalks it up at the Troy Public Library last July during the Chalk the Walk.

While the programs offered for youth and teens at the library aim to encourage kids to read books over the summer, the programs also highlight that the library offers much more than books to young patrons.

“We made changes to the summer program to make it even more inclusive,” said Meaghan Battle, head of youth services at the Troy Public Library.

“It still encompasses reading,” Battle said. However, prizes will be available each week for those children who log their library activities. These will include listening to an audio book, using a self-checkout machine at the library, attending a library program, downloading music or an e-book online, using an electronic resource such as an encyclopedia or other database, reading a magazine, watching a DVD or Blu-ray, using a library computer or playing in the Tech Farm in the children’s section of the library.

Donors and the Friends of the Troy Public Library provide the weekly prizes, which will be cones from Dairy Queen, tacos from Del Taco, frozen drinks from Sonic, one free game of bowling at Troy Lanes, a free treat from TCBY and free children’s meals from P.F. Chang’s and Noodles and Co.

Children’s summer events offered at the library run the gamut: yo-yo fun with Zeemo the Yo-Yo Man, a family magic show; a live animal show with bats; making crafts using shaving cream; a build-your-own-volcano program; exploring dinosaur fossils with Paleo Joe; and making a no-dye tie-dye shirt. Popular favorites for children will include preschool, “lap sit” and preschool story times, and “bouncing babies.” The Friends of the Troy Public Library fund the programs.

“Each week, there is a different prize,” Battle said.

At the end of the summer, there will be a program finale beach-themed party featuring a slot racecar track, a bowling alley, a hula-hoop contest and a petting zoo.

Battle said the party is open to all, and children don’t have to fulfill all guidelines of the program to attend.

“It was a lot of fun before and will be even more fun now,” Battle said. “We’re trying to remove barriers anybody had to participate.”

The point-based program for youth ages 13 to 18 at the library this summer is also branching out beyond reading, said Olivia Olson, teen librarian.

“I’m really excited about it,” she said.

For each five points teens earn, they are eligible for a prize, up to four prizes. Points will be awarded to teens who read then review books, draw artwork, attend programs, use the library, volunteer, enter contests and submit material to “The Zine,” the online magazine for teens.  There will also be a random drawing for a prize basket each month.

Programs for teens include the Otaku Club, an offshoot of the Anime Club. Otaku Club embraces all things Japanese and focuses on manga, anime and eating Pocky, a Japanese candy. Other teen offerings are Hide and Seek in the library for teens only after hours, and an after-hours tournament event June 15 where teens will compete in video game contests and trivia tournaments.  Registration for the June 15 event is required. There will be a teen poetry contest for which teens may enter up to three original poems of any style on or before July 27 to be judged by members of the Teen Advisory Board.

The Troy Public Library is located at 510 W. Big Beaver. For information on the summer library programs, call (248) 524-3538 or visit www.troylibrary.info.

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Terry Oparka at toparka@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1054.