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Staying sharp, page by page

Prizes including Disneyland passes and a bodyboard entice children into reading during summer vacation.

July 29, 2010|By Britney Barnes, britney.barnes@latimes.com
  • A teen volunteer paints the face of a child during the Summer Reading Program's kickoff celebration of Festival of Folktales.
A teen volunteer paints the face of a child during the Summer… (Independent )

The annual Summer Reading Program is in full force, giving kids a chance to get prizes and have a splashingly good time.

The Huntington Beach Public Library's Summer Reading Program "Make a Splash: Read!" already has more than 4,200 children signed up, almost reaching last summer's total of 5,800, as it goes into its home stretch with a number of events to finish out the summer.

The program gives children a reading log where they can record either per book or for every 20 minutes read, and then rewards them when they read 25 books or 500 minutes. Students are rewarded again when they complete the log with 50 books or 1,000 minutes.

"It's to encourage reading throughout the summer to keep their brains sharp," said librarian Susan Korson. "So when they go back to school in the fall, their brains haven't withered."

The children earm raffle tickets and can enter to win restaurant gift certificates, food and candy coupons, bookmarks, stickers and gift baskets. The library also has passes to Disneyland, an American Girl doll and a bodyboard.

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Huntington Beach resident Allison Willey, 5, has her eye on the bodyboard and is hoping to win it with her raffle tickets. She has won one raffle ticket so far, but is almost complete with her book log.

Allison, who will begin kindergarten in the fall, said she likes reading, especially with her parents before bed. Allison reads two books with each of her parents every night, said her mother, Amber Willey.

"If one of us is tired or misses it, she gets really upset," Willey said.

Allison said she likes reading and wants to do the program again next year.

Connor Thomas, a volunteer with the Summer Reading Program, said the children really enjoy the program and the prizes. The 16-year-old helps hand out prizes to the kids and shelves books for the second summer.

The soon-to-be Marina High School junior was involved himself with the program for many years.

"They seem to like it a lot, and I think it's really good that it motivates kids to read," Connor said.

The program goes through Aug. 13, and children 2 to 12 years old can still register for the free activity.

The program will end with two musical safari concerts at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Aug. 13 at the Central Park bandstand.

The library also has a reading program for teenagers aged 13 to 18 and an adult program for those 18 years and older.

The program is open at all five Huntington Beach libraries and online at http://www.hbpl.org. For more information on the program, call (714) 375-5107.

Schedule of events

TODAY

3 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.: Grandparent Read-Aloud

3:30 p.m.: Crafty Kids arts and crafts storytime for K-4th grade

FRIDAY

10 a.m.: Preschool storytime

11 a.m.: Preschool storytime

3 to 5 p.m.: Grandparent Read-Aloud

SATURDAY

10 a.m.: Toddler storytime

11 a.m.: Crafty Kids arts and crafts storytime for K-4th grade

MONDAY

2 to 5 p.m.: Grandparent Read-Aloud

TUESDAY

9:15 a.m., 10 a.m., 11 a.m.: Toddler storytime

2 to 5 p.m.: Grandparent Read-Aloud

WEDNESDAY

11 a.m. and 1 p.m.: BubbleMania in the Tabby Theater. Tickets $4

2 p.m. to 5 p.m.: Grandparent Read-Aloud

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