VPL's Summer Reading Program

The Verona Public Library’s summer reading program has returned, and this year it’s a bit of a zoo.

The summer 2021 theme is “Tails and Tales,” and is set to offer an opportunity for virtual animal-themed events.

The reading program runs until August 31, head of youth services Julie Harrison told the Press. Most events will start the week of June 14, after school gets out.

There’s no age limit for the program, she said. There’s a reading challenge for every age, from infant to adults. The different events typically have suggested or required age levels that the library includes in its event details.

The breakdown of participant groups is pre-reader, school-age, teen and adult, she said.

The reading program is available through an app and website called Beanstack, which families can access either through their computer or phone, Harrison said.

Kids ages five and under may log the number of books that are read to them, while youth ages five and older may track the number of minutes that they read.

Beanstack rewards readers, no matter their reading level, Harrison said. Meeting reading goals earns each reader coupons for local restaurants, passes to places like the Dane County Fair and Eugster’s Farm, in addition to free books, she said.

Participants may also choose to do other activities through Beanstack such as “ask a grown-up to tell you about a favorite childhood memory” or “try a new food,” Harrison said. Each time a participant completes an activity, they earn a ticket that may be entered into grand prize drawings for items such as a Nintendo Switch Lite, pool parties at local hotels, and $50 gift cards.

There won’t be any virtual performers this year, such as magicians, because virtual attendance for those last summer was “mostly dismal,” last year, Harrison said.

For information, visit veronapubliclibrary.org/about/summer-reading-program.

Neal Patten can be contacted at neal.patten@wcinet.com.

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