Blast off to summer reading at the Robertsdale Public Library

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ROBERTSDALE, Alabama — Get ready to blast off into summer reading when the Robertsdale Public Library kicks off its Summer Reading program beginning at 10 a.m. Wednesday, June 5 at the library on Pennsylvania Street.

The theme for this year’s program is “3…2…1… Blastoff!” along with, “Alabama Has a Universe of Stories,” to honor the state’s bicentennial, said Library Director Cynthia Nall.

Come join in on the fun as Mr. Bond and his Science Guys will “make science cool.” Following the kickoff program, Nall and staff welcomes boys and girls ages 3 to 12 to register from 11 a.m. to noon on Wednesday with free hot dogs and drinks.

Every year, the program runs through the entire month of June with events scheduled daily every Tuesday through Friday. An estimated 200 to 300 participate in the program every year.

This year, the library will welcome a new addition, Gracie May Nall, the library’s newest resident Golden Retriever. A welcome party for Gracie May will be held Thursday, June 13 beginning at 2 p.m. with games, prizes, popcorn, snow cones, cake, face painting and balloons.

The library will continue its “Reading With Nayla and Friends” in memory of canine resident Nayla, who died this past year. Gracie will participate along with a new friend, Dozier, a 6-year-old German Shepherd.

Participants can schedule readings with Gracie and Dozier every Tuesday and Wednesday from 1 to 4:30 p.m., and Friday from 10 a.m. to noon, Nall said.

“Gracie May is only six months old, so we don’t know yet what her attention span is,” Nall said, “but we are going to move forward and do the best we can to honor Nayla’s memory.”

Readings can be scheduled at 15-minute intervals. The children will choose a book from the library and read it to Gracie May or her friend. Children need to sign up ahead of time for this program and you must be able to read to participate. See your librarian to schedule an appointment.

Weekly drawings will also be held. Children who read five easy books or two junior books will have their names placed in a weekly drawing for their age group (children must read at their grade level or above and only books checked out at the Robertsdale Public Library will count toward the drawings).

“Thanks to a generous donation, we are expecting at least 500 new books at the library this year,” Nall said, “so we will have plenty of books for our summer guests to pick from.”

A child may enter the drawing up to once a day. The weekly drawing is open to all children ages 3-12. For each entry the child gets in the drawing they will be able to spin the “Big Wheel” for additional prizes.

Butterflies and Ladybugs, open to ages 3-4, will be held every Tuesday at the library beginning at 10 a.m. featuring stories, crafts and puppet shows.

Every Wednesday beginning at 10 a.m. the program will play host to performers.

Scheduled events include:

•June 12: All Hands Production: Puppet Show, the Adventures of the Gingerbread Man.

•June 19: Gene Cordova, ventriloquist.

•June 26: Tom Rayborn – Tom Foolery, juggling extravaganza.

Camp Read-A-Lot story hour will be held beginning at 10 a.m. every Thursday for ages 5 to 12 featuring stories, crafts and puppet shows.

Parties will be held every Thursday beginning at 2 p.m. at the library, including:

•June 6: Dragon and Unicorn Party: Story time, crafts and dragons’ favorite food (tacos) and unicorn dessert.

•June 13: Welcome to the library Gracie May Nall.

•June 20: Rooting Tooting Hoe Down: Come and learn to square dance with a professional caller and dancers. Someone from the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Department, possibly Sheriff Hoss Mack himself, will be on hand issuing honorary Sheriff’s badges. The library will be serving hot dogs and chips.

•June 27: Princess Tea Party/Super Heroes Party: Come dressed in your best princess outfit or superhero costume. Spend the day with fun games and crafts. Princesses will have tea, sandwiches and cake, while the superheroes will enjoy pizza.

For more information on this and other activities, contact the library, 251-947-8960.