Summer program inspires lifelong passion for reading

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  • PARTICIPANTS OF all ages listening to Nikki Ericksen read a story at the Plains Library Summer Reading Program party. (Photo credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

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    LACEY KULAWINSKI looks at a globe with senior library clerk Linda Bursell. (Photo Credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

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    A UNIVERSE of stories was the theme of the 2019 Plains Library Summer Reading Program. These were the bags given to all the participants. (Photo credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

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    SOME OF the prizes given out at this year’s Summer Reading Program, hosted by the Plains Public Library. (Photo credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

  • PARTICIPANTS OF all ages listening to Nikki Ericksen read a story at the Plains Library Summer Reading Program party. (Photo credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

  • 1

    LACEY KULAWINSKI looks at a globe with senior library clerk Linda Bursell. (Photo Credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

  • 2

    A UNIVERSE of stories was the theme of the 2019 Plains Library Summer Reading Program. These were the bags given to all the participants. (Photo credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

  • 3

    SOME OF the prizes given out at this year’s Summer Reading Program, hosted by the Plains Public Library. (Photo credit Cheri Minemyer/Clark Fork Valley Press)

Some people say that a man without education is like building a house without a foundation.

Members and employees of the Plains Public Library wholeheartedly shared that sentiment.

Since 1918 the town library has brought education, information and entertainment to the local community and has stood where it does now since 1937.

That same goal has not changed today, and every summer for eight years now, from June 17 to Aug. 7, the library hosts a summer reading program for the youth of the community and later in the year for the mature. This year there were 75 participants from newborns to teenagers.

Participants were allowed to select any book, or books, that they wanted and first filled out a blue sheet and signed it to show that they were committed to the program, then they were given several white sheets to record their reading time down.

Each white sheet constituted an hour and, after which was turned in, would grant the participant a ticket. The participant would then be allowed to select the prize they would like to be put in the running for and for every hour they completed they would gain another chance of winning a prize at the end of the nearly eight-week period.

There were 10 prizes to be won, and each was related to the theme of this year’s program: The Universe of Stories.

Being space themed, the prizes included the likes of a Star Wars Lego set, a NASA backpack and a small solar system planetarium. All participants were also sent home with Play-Doh and a certificate for participating.

On the last day of the program, Nikkie Ericksen, whom planned the event, did several presentations talking about the universe, UV rays and the position of the sun. The volunteers of the program also drew for the prizes and threw a party for the participants.

The Plains Public Library is committed to constant improvement, having gathered their first computer in 1983. The ultimate goal for the library is to become the information center for the community, and the town of plains.

They are constantly collecting information on the town’s history and finding ways for the community members to connect to the town. One example of this is how the library collects business cards and contacts to many of the local businesses for anyone looking to hire local work or collect local supplies.

Another is the new website, that went live on the very day of the reading program party. The website will allow for users not only to access any information needed in the library but also links to apply for Medicare and Medicaid as well as to participate in the 2020 census. There is also tons of information on social security and FAFSA, as well as ways for students to apply for many grants to higher education. The website is simply: plainslibrary.org.

As the Library Director said, “We are here to support the community’s efforts in reading and to do anything else we can to support and inspire a lifelong love of reading.”

Library cards are free to the community with a mailing address.

There is a two-month probationary period during which a member can only obtain two items at any one time. After that members are allowed to check out 20 items at a time.

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