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Join the remaining Libraries Rock! Summer Reading Programs
July 11, 2018

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East County Regional Library has numerous "pretty cool programs" left for the Libraries Rock! Summer Reading program.

A crowd favorite, "John Storms: World of Reptiles," will take place at 11 a.m. Tuesday, July 17. McWilliam said he has a humungous snake and alligator, turtles and other critters.

"He is a whole lot of fun. The kids can't touch the animals, but he talks about habitat and what they like to eat," she said.

Registration is important because it is a high demand program.

"He lives in Cape Coral and has had a connection with the library system for a long time. He's been doing this for over 20 years," McWilliam said.

The last program of the summer for kindergarten through fifth graders is "Sounds of Nature" from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Tuesday, July 24. She said Ding Darling sends an educator to the library who will talk about the different sounds of nature and animals.

There are also a handful of teen programs.

On Wednesday, July 11, "Rock Art Garden" will be held at 2 p.m.

"It's rock painting, so you can paint rocks to resemble different cacti and flowers and plant them in small pots, or do the rock painting phenomenon," McWilliam said.

The following Wednesday, July 18, at 2 p.m., teens will have the opportunity to participate in "Giant Games and Tiny Art." The "cool program" will use life-sized jenga and angry birds games with shrinky dinky art.

"When we do more formal programs, the teens don't really like it especially in the summer," McWilliam said.

To attract the teens, she said they focus on programs where they are doing something, such as completing a project in an informal way, so they can also spend time with their friends.

Registration for the programs can be done online at www.leegov.com/library

McWilliam said the whole purpose of summer reading is to get kids into the library reading and learning throughout the summer in a fun way.

This summer, kids were invited to attend numerous activities and programs during their six weeks of Libraries Rock! themed program.

McWilliam said the libraries have been busier than previous years and the programs have been full.

"It is going really well," she said.

In addition to the programs, youngsters had the opportunity to pick out a free book to bring home while supplies last.

"The kids are enjoying picking out books," McWilliam said.

The hope is to give out 15,000 books before the summer ends.

"We have up to 17,000 books to give out," she explained.

The library had the opportunity to give out free books through refocusing on their summer reading budget. Instead of giving away prizes, they brought things down to bare bones to purchase books. In addition to the libraries budget, they received grants, funds from organizations and money raised through the library Friend's groups.

"We were able to participate in some book programs to get lower cost books, but we still want to provide high interest books. We were really fortunate to put together a really fun summer," McWilliam said.

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