Alabaster kids catch the reading bug

FROM STAFF REPORTS

There’s a bug going around. Not a bad flu bug, but a good bug and Alabaster’s children can catch it during the summer at the Albert L. Scott Library.

It’s a bug that will challenge them to become reading champions. And the great thing is any kid can catch it.

“Catch the Reading Bug” is the theme of the free Summer Challenge at the library. The initiative kicks off Monday, June 2 for children 10 and under.

The day will feature two shows by magician Chris Frings, one at 10:30 a.m. and another at 3:30 p.m., plus free ice cream and a goody bag that includes a summer activity calendar.

To prepare children, Youth Services Librarian Frances Smith visited schools in the area to encourage students to Catch the Reading Bug.

“This is a really fun theme, and we’ve bought lots of new books about bugs and kids who like bugs,” said Smith. “When I visited the schools, some children told me about their favorite bugs.”

Adults can register children between June 2-July 9.

Kids pick a reading goal and get prizes along the way. When they reach their goal, they receive a certificate and can enter prize drawings for a bicycle, gift baskets and other surprises.

“Metamorphosis at Your Library” is the theme of the Young Adults (YAs) Challenge for kids 11-18. They will have a separate kickoff on Tuesday, June 3 at 6 p.m. It will be a pizza party with music and surprises from Cox Radio’s 95.7 JAMZ.

YAs can have any reading goal, but once they’ve read at least three books they can enter a drawing for an iPod and other prizes.

The Summer Challenge ends with a finale on Wednesday, July 16 from 10:30 a.m.-noon.

There will be free refreshments, face painting, balloon sculptures and a short performance of “Beauty and the Beast” by the Red Mountain Theatre Company.

The goal of the Summer Challenge is to encourage youth to read for pleasure when they are not in school.