North Shelby Library wins $1,000 grant

By EMILY BECKETT / Staff Writer

BIRMINGHAM – The North Shelby Library recently received one of 20 $1,000 summer reading program grants from the Young Adult Library Services Association and the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

The North Shelby library will use the grant to fund a large portion of its reading program for teens this summer, according to Kate Etheredge, North Shelby Library young adult librarian and Mt Laurel Library branch manager.

“We’re excited about this,” Etheredge said. “Teens read books over the summer, and we provide the incentive to continue reading books.”

Etheredge said the program will consist of two scheduled events each week, such as a movie and an interactive game based on a book.

“For every two books they read, they get an entry to win a grand prize,” Etheredge said. “This year, it is a Nintendo 3DS.”

Teens may read any books from the library, home or their required summer reading lists for school.

“We don’t limit them because we want them to read as much as possible,” Etheredge said.

Battle of the Books, Fear Factor Food and a live musical performance by Wizard Rock and other Harry Potter tribute bands are just three of many events teens can look forward to in June and July.

Anyone in the sixth grade through 12th grade can participate.

“The library does offer summer reading programs for adults and another for children through fifth grade,” Etheredge said.

Indian Springs Village Mayor Steve Zerkis said the Indian Springs Village City Council awarded the North Shelby library a $2,000 grant at its May 3 meeting after asking Katie Guerin, library director, about the library’s need for a grant for the summer reading program.

“The city has given grants to the library in some previous years when they were requested,” Zerkis said. “The summer reading program itself is outstanding.”

Guerin said the library also received a $1,000 grant from Wells Fargo and a $500 grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield for this summer’s reading programs.

“I would say that the library has experienced double digit percentage growth over the past five years, and we are hoping to reach 1,500 children for this summer program,” Guerin said. “It is a way for the library to bridge the gap during the summer months when children are not in a classroom setting.”

Go to NorthShelbyLibrary.org for a complete list of summer reading activities for all ages.