|Bright Star Touring Theatre; Illusionist/Storyteller Caleb Sigmon|
With buildings closed at present and traditional in-person activities unavailable, the library instead will engage kids with virtual performances and storytimes, reading rewards, and take-home activities keyed to the adventurous theme or to weekly topics. Options to participate vary from library to library – find details, a complete schedule, video links and library contact information at www.randolphlibrary.org/summer.
“This year more than ever, it’s important that kids keep reading during the summer,” says Samantha Colwell, head of Children’s Services. “Staying engaged with reading and learning helps children pick up where they left off when the next school year starts. Library summer programs provide a fun, no-pressure way to do that.”
Some libraries also will offer reading programs for teens and adults.
Two big events for children and families will anchor the summer activities: seven live, interactive Zoom performances by Bright Star Touring Theatre of two shows, Aesop’s Fables and Once Upon a Time, June 16-25; and illusionist/storyteller Caleb Sigmon’s The Wizard Experience, a YouTube performance inspired by The Wizarding World of Harry Potter available July 20-25.
The Bright Star shows are assigned to each of the seven libraries, but anyone can sign up for a time that’s best for them. Times are as follows:
- Asheboro, 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 17;
- Archdale, 7 p.m. Thursday, June 25;
- Franklinville, 3 p.m. Tuesday, June 16;
- Liberty, 2 p.m. Thursday, June 25;
- Ramseur, 10:30 a.m. Thursday, June 18;
- Randleman, 10:30 a.m. Thursday, June 25;
- Seagrove, 3 p.m. Thursday, June 18.
Exclusive links for the Caleb Sigmon performance will be announced closer to the time of the event.
Meanwhile, virtual weekly events with special guests will include folk singer/storyteller Sharon Clarke, N.C. Zoo educators, origami magician Yasu Ishida, ScienceTellers, The Curly Fries Band, Grey Seal Puppets and more. The libraries also will continue to post virtual storytimes and other locally-produced programs, such as Asheboro library’s “Mindfulness with Ms. Emily” and craft instructional videos, “Stick Around with Ms. Becky.”
For those who lack Internet access at home but have Internet-capable phones, tablets or laptops, drive-up WiFi is available in the parking lots of library buildings between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. daily.
The Summer Reading Program is sponsored by the Friends of the Randolph County Public Library with support from the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. It’s part of a national effort to keep children reading during the break from school; research shows that kids who read during the summer are better prepared to begin the next school year.
For further information, visit www.randophlibrary.org/summer, call the Asheboro Children’s Room at 336-318-6804, or contact your local library.