Laurene Weste: Summer reading fun at your local public library

Summertime can be a wonderful experience for young students. They’ve studied hard for months, and finally, the moment has come to take a break from academic stresses and enjoy outdoor activities. Although summer break is beneficial because it allows students to recharge for the fall quarter, it is important that reading continues when school is not in session in order to prevent an academic decline. The term “summer slide” refers to a decline in a student’s reading ability and loss of other skills that can occur over the summer.

The Santa Clarita Public Library has a free program called “Summer Reading” that can help encourage fun reading challenges and themed events. This year’s theme is “A Universe of Stories” and focuses on space exploration. This program runs from June 10 through July 27.

Space explorers of all ages are encouraged to participate and register for free at SCVSummerReading.com. Once signed up, the website can be used to log reading challenges for a chance to win prizes, discuss book reviews with others and learn about upcoming Summer Reading events taking place at your local Santa Clarita Library branch. Participants are also encouraged to take the Five Book Summer Challenge, which asks them to read at least five books, magazines, audiobooks or eBooks, for a chance to win a prize.

My favorite part about the program is that it makes learning fresh and fun with complementary space and exploration-themed events for children, teens, adults and families.

Children events include workshops on how to make stomp rockets, upcycled bracelets, a Mars Rover-inspired parachute drop, magnetic slime and much more. Meanwhile, teens can try their hand at making a tiny universe terrarium, paper rockets and intergalactic-themed soap. Adults looking to relax for the summer can attend Summer Reading events to learn how to make a nebula-themed bubble pendant, watch campy sci-fi movies or try their hand at embroidering star constellations.

Don’t miss out on the summer storytimes held at all branches for different age groups. For a full schedule of these events, please visit SCVSummerReading.com, or browse the events calendar on the Library’s website at SantaClaritaLibrary.com.

This Summer Reading program will culminate with a stellar celebration. On Saturday, July 27, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., stop by the Old Town Newhall Library for the Stellar Finale with guest performer: BubbleMania. The free finale will feature family-friendly games, crafts, activities, storytimes and a fun bubble show by BubbleMania.

I’d like to personally thank our very special friends at Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library. Their generous support of our Summer Reading program allows this program to be available throughout our community. Their continuous funding also provides numerous learning experiences in our libraries all year long. Join with me in being a member of the Friends of Santa Clarita Public Library, visit SantaClaritaFOL.com to sign up today.

Regardless of your age, there is always room to learn and explore something new. You don’t need to travel far, just pick up a book from your local Santa Clarita Public Library and have an out-of-this-world fun experience from home.

Please enjoy your summer and have a blast with the Summer Reading program — after all, it’s free!

To learn more about the Santa Clarita Public Library, please visit SantaClaritaLibrary.com, or call 661-259-0750.

Laurene Weste is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected]

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