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Summer Reading Program underway at New Durham Library…and at home


June 27, 2020
NEW DURHAM — "We're trying to have as many activities as possible that are similar to our normal summer reading programming," New Durham Public Library Director Cathy Allyn said, "so the only difference here will be that it's done at home."

She was referring to a doggone fun paint fest in the works. The first 28 households that register for the library's summer reading program, "Imagine Your Story," will be able to pick up a wooden form to paint at home, then return to the library for display on the front lawn.

"They are all puppies," Allyn said, "and we're asking kids to paint them to represent their favorite book or favorite character from a book."

At the end of the summer, the artists can pick up their creations and bring them home.

Each participant in the program will also have an "avatar" that fits with the theme of the program on the front of the building. "Everyone in town will be able to see how engaged the kids are."

The young readers will be able to wear their reading progress; beads and brag tags can be earned by the number of minutes and hours read each week during July and worn on a Pride Chain that participants can pick up in June.

Children will also be able to register for a time slot on Wednesday, July 22 to put their illustrated personal pandemic stories on ceiling tiles.

"Every summer we have the kids add to our ceiling gallery," Allyn said. "We'll have stations set up on the lawn and inside to ensure social distancing while they decorate."

Storyteller Simon Brooks is scheduled to hold an outdoor event through a Children's Literacy Foundation grant on the New Durham School's athletic field on July 27 at 1:00 p.m. "We're anticipating a big crowd," Allyn said, "and needed the room. We're grateful that the school is allowing us to use its grounds."

More details to follow.

Parents can register their children aged 4-12 for the children's program at

http://newdurhamlibrary.readsquared.com/ or by calling the library at 859-2201.

Good news for e-reading; in addition to New Hampshire Downloadable Books offering an expanded selection, the library will be circulating e-readers to patrons.

Allyn said three of the new e-readers connect directly to OverDrive, simplifying the process of checking out downloadable books.

"Even though patrons can now reserve and pick-up books from the library," she said, "the interlibrary loan system is not running. Being able to download books provides more options."

For those who generally prefer holding a book and, therefore, do not own an e-reader, borrowing a device and downloading a book or two is the perfect solution.

The library also has access to hundreds of downloadable children's and young adult books, both fiction and non-fiction. Call for details.

Reserves from the library's collection can be made online at newdurhamlibrary.org with a library card, by calling with a request, or by emailing the library at newdurhamlibrary@gmail.com.

Patrons will be notified when their items are ready, and pick-up times are Tuesdays 3 – 7 p.m., Thursdays 11 a.m. – 3 p.m., and Saturdays 10:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.

In the next few weeks, mobile devices will be available to adults for use outside of the library for quick tasks such as checking email.

"People will be able to borrow a tablet or Chromebook to use in their cars or out on the lawn," Allyn said. "Sometimes you need to jump on the internet for just a little while, and until we are open to the public on a more regular basis, this is the way to go."

Once the loaning program starts, patrons may call for appointments.

"We're offering as many services as we can, during these unusual times," Allyn said.

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