Pelham’s summer reading program ends with carnival

PELHAM – The Pelham Public Library’s “Build a Better World” Summer Reading Program concluded on Tuesday, July 25, with carnival games and balloon animals.

The library’s Summer Finale Carnival featured carnival games, such as cornhole toss, mini bowling and mini ski ball, a balloon animal artist and an appearance by Sonic restaurant’s mascot. Each child received a goodie bag and helped themselves to snacks and beverages.

About 100 reading program participants attended the carnival. This year more than 500 kids signed up to participate in the reading program, Children’s Librarian Rebecca Burchfield said.

“This is something that the city provides and is available for anyone to come,” Burchfield said. “It’s fun and educational and there’s something to do every day of the week.”

Each day of the week the library offered different activities for kids to participate in as a part of its reading program. Kids watched movies, got creative with LEGO blocks, enjoyed a live animal presentation featuring reptiles, built birdhouses and much more.

Children also participated in an ongoing game of Book Bingo throughout the summer. The Book Bingo sheet lists different types of books kids can read – like fiction, non-fiction, funny or picture books – and for each row completed the child gets a prize. Kids that completed the whole sheet had their name entered into a drawing to win a bicycle.

Kids were allowed to complete more than one Book Bingo sheet to increase their chances of winning the bike, which was donated by Bike Link. Eight-year-old Hannah Yocom was the winner of the bike. She will go to the Bike Link store where they will fit her with an age and size appropriate bike and a helmet.

Pelham resident Danyell Ballou said the reading program has helped her 4-year-old daughter understand the concept of reading. Her 2-year-old son also participated in the program.

“I normally read a picture book to my daughter a few times and then she tries to read it to her 2-year-old brother,” Ballou said. “She’s really developing a desire to learn how to read and she understands the concept of reading.”

As a parent, Ballou said the reading program motivates her to make sure that she is reading to her children and encourages her to utilize the library more.

“When they see me checking out books it helps develop their appreciation for the library,” she said. “Book Bingo helps you branch out and read different types of books that you don’t normally read.”

To see more photos from this event, go to Shelbycountyphotos.com.