MONTVILLE, NJ - With summer nearing its end, a fun program also came to an end at the Montville Township Public Library on Aug. 14.

For the last eight weeks, township kids of pre-K to fifth grade would come to the library for the summer reading program. These young readers, while enjoying their summer vacation, found more fun among the hundreds of books available to them.

“This library program makes him competitive and excited to read,” said Montville resident David Roeltgen, whose eight-year-old son Jason has been part of the program for five years. “It’s a fun program for the kids and gives them reinforcement and structure for reading during the summertime. And the staff are great and encouraging. Jason wanted to read all the ‘Goosebumps’ novels, but there’s at least 70. So he only read 15!”

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Once a week, kids would attend the library and pick out any random book they wanted to read. When finished, they would log in their time and reading amount, tracing their progress. This summer, the reading program saw as much as 200 kids enrolled. And aside from reading, children would participate in other activities, such as computer learning, arts n’ crafts and weekly raffles.

“This summer’s reading program went exactly as we wanted it to,” said Amy Resnikoff, who is the head of children’s programs and services at the township library. “That’s what we want for the kids: to see them happy. It keeps them reading during the summer and they enjoy what they’re doing.”

Last Wednesday, the township library concluded the summer reading program with a finale event for all readers. This included bingo games where young winners could win prizes, like stuffed toys, spiral art drawing kits, magic tricks gear, sponge capsules and yo-yos. And following bingo, ice cream was handed out to the nearly 50 kids in attendance.

Even though the summer reading program is over, it’s safe to assume that many of the kids will return for next year’s program, exploring new universes through books.

“It’s fun to keep reading,” said eight-year-old Patrick Farrell. “The program has taught me many lessons, like that you should learn from your mistakes. And this final event was really good because I like bingo and ice cream.”

Patrick has been participating in the summer reading program for the last three years. And for this summer, he enjoyed reading books mainly about sports. The last book that he finished was “Half-Court Heroes,” a story involving basketball. His five-year-old sister Annelle also partakes in the program.

“I like taking out books about ballerina and Barbie,” said Annelle. “And it’s fun to read about new things.”

In support of more reading for children, the township library continues to hold storytime sessions. Dates for storytime, as well as other events and activities for children, teens and adults, can be found on the Montville Township Public Library website at https://www.montvillelibrary.org/.

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