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Originally published: 2013-06-04 18:42:04
Last modified: 2013-06-04 18:42:49

Dig into reading

by Anna Oakes

Summer is no time to put down the books -- it's a time to dig in.

The Watauga County Public Library invites young people to "Dig Into Reading" this summer, and the fun begins Wednesday, June 12, with an ice cream party at 2 p.m. on the library lawn in downtown Boone. Music by Eya: Drum & Dance will be provided thanks to funding from the Watauga County Arts Council.

Each year, the library's summer reading program offers prizes and entertaining programs to keep young people engaged in reading over their summer vacations from school.

"All programs are free, and our goal is to keep youth reading so that important gains children have achieved over the school year are not lost over the summer," said Judith Winecoff, youth services librarian at Watauga County Library.

Participants may stop by the library to pick up a reading log to track the amount of time they spend reading. For every 105 minutes a week of reading time participants may pick a prize; it could be a book, food coupon or other prize.

All ages may participate, and reading materials do not have to come from the library. Listening to someone read to you counts as reading time.

"Studies have shown that 50 percent of a child's intellectual development occurs before age 4," Winecoff said. "Exposure to books and reading makes a significant difference in a child's ability to succeed in school and in life."

Throughout the summer, the main branch and Western Watauga Branch library locations will offer special programs for children, who will learn about birds, gem mining, magic, science, mind reading, reptiles and more through sto¬ries, crafts, music, dance and other activities. Some programs require signup in advance.

In addition, the main branch offers story time every day at 11 a.m. and baby lap time on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10:30 a.m. On Tuesdays, June 18 and 25 and throughout July, "Music with Laura" takes place at 11 a.m.

The main library is located at 140 Queen St. in downtown Boone. The Western Watauga Branch is located at 1085 U.S. 421 in Sugar Grove. For more information, call the library at (828) 264-8784 or visit

Summer Reading
Program Schedule
Main Branch
June 12, 2 p.m. • Ice Cream Party
June 13, 11:30 a.m. • Birdman Dave
June 18, 10 a.m. • Amazing Al the Magician
June 20, 9:30 and 10:30 a.m. • Gemstone mining              (signup required)
June 27, 1:30 p.m. • Mad Science
July 10, 1 p.m. • Reptiles (signup required)
July 25, 2:40 p.m. • Game truck (signup required)

Western Watauga Branch
June 13, 2 p.m. • Birdman Dave
June 18, 1 p.m. • Amazing Al the Magician
June 20, 2 p.m. • Gemstone mining
(signup required)
June 27, 3:30 p.m. • Mad Science
July 10, 3 p.m. • Reptiles (signup required)
July 25, 11 a.m. • Game truck (signup required)