OWH Column: OPL’s Summer Reading Program Launches

This column, highlighting the Omaha Public Library's Summer Reading Program, appeared in the June 9, 2024 edition of the Omaha World-Herald (NE), page 6E of the Living Section. It is also available at Omaha.com, opens a new window.

Library's summer programs will feature something for everyone - Omaha Public Library's summer reading program encourages curiosity, exploration through books

Summer is here and so is Omaha Public Library's (OPL) annual Summer Reading Program (SRP), now through July 31! Library patrons are encouraged to celebrate reading and learning, and - though reading is its own reward - take advantage of the chance to earn prizes.

OPL will provide kids and teens with two free books to keep when they register for SRP - giving them reading material to help them get started toward their goals! After completing 10 hours of reading and/or other learning activities, kids, teens and adults will receive additional prizes (while supplies last), along with an entry for raffle prizes. Each of OPL's 12 branch locations will raffle off prizes like Little Tikes Story Dream Machines, Magna-Tiles, Squishmallows and a variety of gift cards including Omaha activities such as Topgolf, The Makery, Spielbound and Urban Air.

This year's SRP theme is "Adventure Begins at Your Library," a fitting concept for libraries that encourage curiosity, exploration and discovery through the pages of books.

Summer Reading Program Events and Activities

Kids and their parents looking for entertaining and educational things to do during the summer will find free programs for everyone at OPL. Tweens and teens can participate in escape rooms, gaming tournaments, babysitting clinics or make their own tote bags to carry those summer reads. Kids in early elementary school can participate in animal shows, Do Space pop-ups, magic shows and escape rooms, to name a few. Younger children can meet beloved storybook characters Pete the Cat and Little Critter, as well as members of the Omaha Symphony or Omaha Conservatory of Music at special story times.

Take full advantage of summer weather by joining OPL "Out & About" for story times, opens a new window in locations around town, including Gene Leahy Mall, Joslyn Castle & Gardens, Lauritzen Gardens, Dundee Community Garden and Chalco Hills Natural Resources Center.

Of course, all of the programs OPL offers throughout the year are still available during the summer:

No matter your interests, there is something for everyone this summer. Discover everything the library has to offer! Pick up a calendar of events at your neighborhood branch or view a complete schedule at omahalibrary.org/summer-reading-program, opens a new window. Some events may require registration.

OPL would like to thank its generous sponsors for their support of summer reading: Richard Brooke Foundation, Adah and Leon Millard Foundation, Cox, Gilbert C. Swanson Foundation, Pitney Bowes Foundation, Sokolof Foundation, Special Donor-Advised Fund of the Jewish Federation of Omaha Foundation, Friends of the Omaha Public Library and the Omaha Public Library Foundation.

Nancy Novotny is program manager at Omaha Public Library.

About Omaha Public Library

Omaha Public Library (OPL) strengthens our communities by connecting people with ideas, information, and innovative services, acting as an essential catalyst, collaborator, and connector. Learn about OPL's collections, facilities, services, programs and more at omahalibrary.org, opens a new window.