Latah County libraries provides summer reading, virtual performances

Patrons can periodically pick up crafts, projects from Moscow Public Library 



Latah County residents can participate in virtual performances, as well as check out summer reading titles chosen by library staff.

CHERYL AARNIO, Evergreen reporter

Residents of Latah County can get their fill of reading, crafts and virtual performances this summer through the Latah County Library District.

LCLD is offering a Neighborhood Reads program with the theme, “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” inspired by Mr. Rogers, LCLD Outreach Specialist Bailey Gillreath-Brown said.

“We felt like it was appropriate for our world today where we’re going to celebrate our neighborhood and our neighbors and figure out ways to spread kindness and love in our community,” said Stacie Echanove, LCLD youth services manager.

This year, there are different books for each age group. Young children can read “My Neighborhood” or “Here We Are.” Early readers can read “Waiting is Not Easy!” and school-age children will read “The Wild Robot.” Teenagers are reading “Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe” while adults read “Little Fires Everywhere.”

People picked up those books for their own personal libraries from the Moscow Public Library last week. A steady number of people came and lined up to receive them June 1, Gillreath-Brown said.

“It was really fun to get that opportunity to reconnect back with our library community,” Echanove said.

The library staff did not host storytime during the pandemic, so they had not been able to see their normal patrons. It was wonderful to see how much the children had grown and changed since then, Echanove said.

LCLD has bought more copies of the summer reading titles, Gillreath-Brown. Copies can be checked out digitally or physically for people who were not able to get their hands on those free books.

There will be a digital event for each book. The dates have not been finalized, although they have decided which week each event will happen, she said.

For younger children, there will be a storytime with opportunities for interaction. For adults, there will likely be a book discussion. These events may take place on Zoom or Facebook. That detail has not been finalized, Gillreath-Brown said.

There will also be a reading challenge through July 31. The first challenge is to read for 10 days. Once that challenge is completed, she said, participants can pick up a bingo card and complete five activities in a row. The final challenge is to do every activity on the bingo card.

There are different bingo cards for different age groups and one all-ages bingo card. They will also be available online, Echanove said.

The challenges on the bingo cards do not require technology, which makes it more accessible, Gillreath-Brown said. Some of the challenges include doing something kind, writing a letter, reading outside or identifying plants.

For each completed reading challenge, she said people can fill out an entry form and win prizes.

On the LCLD Facebook page, there will be digital performances for children, the first of which occurred on June 5 with L-Bow the Clown.

The next performance will be Eric Herman and the Puppy Dogs, available at 11 a.m. June 9 with a question-and-answer portion on June 19.

Children can interact virtually with the performers by asking questions in the chat section, Gillreath-Brown said. The performers also have a chance to feature children’s drawings. 

All library branches will periodically be offering Curbside Crafts for children with craft to-go kits available for curbside pickup. Those kits include origami, bookmark-making, fairy house-making and plant-growing, Echanove said.

At Moscow Public Library, they will also be offering Pick-Up Projects for adults, which includes crafts like making beeswax candles, coloring (for adults) and decorating a tote bag, Gillreath-Brown said.

“We are all a little bit confined to our neighborhoods, and a lot of us are interacting with our neighbors in different ways,” she said. “It’s become really clear that we still need to have that social component even if we can’t actually be together.”