ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – This year, the Orange County Library System is going hybrid with its reading program with virtual and in-person events. It’s all in an effort to keep both kids and adults excited to continue learning and reading over the summer months.
Ten hours or 600 minutes—that’s how much time third grader Zachary Schwerstein said he’s going to read this summer. If he meets or exceeds the goal, he’ll get to enter to win prizes as part of the Orange County Library System’s summer reading challenge. His mom said he’s well on his way.
“He’s already read two books. He’s an avid reader. He’s finally independently learned his reading,” Jamie Schwestein said.
Zachary even added he read “way past his bedtime.”
“My mom and dad told me to keep going to bed and I said, ‘Nope, I’m going to keep reading.’ I finished the rest of my book in one night. I read 100 pages in one night,” Zachary said.
The prizes for readers who bank at least ten hours over the summer include tablets, scooters, gaming consoles and more. OCLS’s summer program also includes virtual and in-person events spread throughout more than a dozen locations across Orange County.
“We brought back Yehaa Bob, Curbside Circus, the Spheres Bubble Show. It’s great seeing people come in person to laugh and get back together and learning what it’s like to get back in the library. It’s thrilling to see the library be the hub in the community again,” OCLS Director of Marketing Erin Sullivan said.
Even the Central Florida Zoo brought in animals for a learning experience. Zachary said it was one of his favorite events this summer.
“We did it all in the library and we saw a python, a scorpion and a tortoise,” Zachary said.
Jamie said the programs OCLS offers has helped fill some of the gaps in education left by virtual learning during the pandemic, encouraging other parents to get involved.
“It’s an enrichment, something they look forward to. It is a nice little outing for us,” Schwestein said.
The Summer Reading Challenge ends July 23. There’s a challenge for kids and adults with both virtual and in-person events.
Here’s how to take part in the challenge:
- Read at least 20 minutes every day.
- Learn more about Goodie Bags, the Grand Prize Giveaway and the End of Summer Celebration!
- Pick up a take-home craft at your library branch.
- View the online calendar to register for upcoming programs and events.
*An Orange County Library regular, property owner or fee card in good standing is required to be eligible to win prizes. Reciprocal borrowers, OCLS staff, including board members and their families, are ineligible.