The St. Tammany Parish Library’s annual Summer Reading Challenge, themed "Tails &
Tales", begins Friday, May 28th, with a simple goal: to encourage everyone to spend 20 minutes reading every day this summer. Tails & Tales is designed to give patrons of ALL ages the pick of the litter when it comes to “pawesome” summer reads and “fintastic” events and prizes.
“Now more than ever we need to connect. Reading, telling stories, playing, and learning are great ways for families and friends to spend time this summer. Not to mention that the Summer Reading Challenge is fun! The St. Tammany Parish Library is here to support our community’s imagination,” said Tanya DiMaggio, Assistant Director of Support Services.
The Summer Reading Challenge kicks off Friday, May 28, 2021 and continues through Saturday August 7, 2021. Throughout this time, readers of all ages can visit the Library Summer Reading page here and click on the Tails & Tales icon to create an account in the challenge tracking program Beanstack.
Beanstack tracks your minutes and then awards one point for each minute spent reading. Earn 720 points to complete the Summer Reading Challenge and win prizes. This year the St. Tammany Parish Library presents a community challenge to all St. Tammany Parish residents:o show their love of reading by working towards the goal of 250,000 collective minutes. Everything counts — books, magazines, graphic novels, and audiobooks. You can download the Beanstack app from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
In addition to the annual Summer Reading Challenge, the Library is excited to present free, fun events for all age groups throughout the summer. While all library programs are free and open to the public, online registration is required for each virtual event by visiting the Library’s calendar of events. See the snapshot of planned events below.
A virtual kick-off party will start things off on Friday, May 28 at 6:30 p.m. with Kabuki dancers for an hour of fun and dancing for all ages – right in your own home.
Children’s events will include both virtual and in-person programming. Weekly events include: in-person outdoor storytimes and StoryWalks® across the parish. Virtual programs include: storytimes, crafts, escape rooms, field trips, and read alouds, as well as special guests like Johnette Downing, Reptile Discovery, Didgeridoo Down Under, the New Orleans Museum of Art, and many more. Patrons can enjoy online games, quizzes, and challenges on the Beanstack app. Craft supplies are provide and will be available for pick-up at the library.
Teen Virtual Events will include weekly workshops including Creative Writing with local author Joy E. Rancatore, art with artist-in-residence Jennifer Waller, cooking with Sherri Hansen from Culinary Kids, and more.
Adult Virtual Events (for ages 19 and up) will include craft classes, virtual field trips, educational lectures, and fitness classes just to name a few!
Family Virtual Events will happen every Friday night at 6:30 p.m. and include crafts, games, pets, urban legends, a safari, and a few surprises along the way.
All outdoor activities are weather permitting.
Public libraries offer their communities a constructive way to spend the summer. The Summer Reading Challenge seeks to instill a lifelong love of reading in St. Tammany Parish youth and to involve them in rewarding and stimulating activities. Studies have shown that the effects of summer reading programs improve reading comprehension skills between school years.
For more information on the St. Tammany Parish Summer Reading Challenge or other Library programs, call your local branch library, check the calendar of events or contact Children’s Services Coordinator Jenny Mayer at 985-893-6280 ext. 2017, Teen Services Coordinator Jennifer Rifino at 985-626-9779 ext. 3004, or Adult Programming Coordinator Jillian Boudreaux at 985-893-6280 ext. 2010.