By Alex Haglund
School is out for the summer, and while writing and ‘rithmatic might be set by the wayside until classes start again, reading is still going strong for area kids who took part in the Nashville Public Library’s summer reading program, which wrapped up Thursday afternoon, July 28, with a celebration at the Community Center.
The program saw 346 children come in altogether, about 50 per week. Out of the kids who took part in the program on one level or another, “in total, we probably had about 60 that completed it,” said Nashville Library Director Dennis Gregory.
This was Gregory’s first year running the program after taking over for retiring Library Director Linda Summers, and there were several changes to the program, the most notable of which was young readers recording the amount of minutes they spent reading, as opposed to the number of pages read.
The theme for this year’s program was “Read For The Win”, and the biggest winner of the year was Natalie Finke, who read for about 2,500 minutes, followed by Josephine Bronke, who read for about 1,500 minutes. Gregory said that both of the girls completed their books, plus a challenge section, and even after all that, one more challenge page as well, so they really did read FTW.
Even those two’s minutes were just a drop in the bucket compared to the overall total – altogether children in the reading program read for 31793 minutes.
At the wrap up celebration, there were snacks and refreshments, as well as prizes for all of the top readers.
Along with the festivities, the kids were entertained by the musical stylings of Babaloo (Rob Compton), who performed to peals of uproarious laughter from his pint-sized audience.
Now with the summer reading program complete, Gregory, along with the five adult and five youth volunteers who assisted with the Summer Reading Program, will be taking a much needed break (don’t worry, the Library will still remain open, of course), before more youth programming will begin later in the fall.
Helping the library with the summer reading program were several donors, who Gregory thanked. They include: Washington County Title, Buretta’s, Meier Chevrolet-Buick, Campagna’s Funeral Home, Nashville Pharmacy, Advanced Vision Care, Nashville Savings Bank, J & R Appliances, Nashville Best Western, Meyer’s Greenhouse, Doehring’s Pharmacy, F&M Bank, Curry and Associates, C&C Realty, Innertech, Allmart, the City of Nashville, BCMW, Hardee’s, Casey’s, Dairy Queen, and Sunseekers/Tropical Sno.