Mayor Cathy Carlat has announced the return of the annual summer literacy program for Peoria residents: “Peoria Reads: Today a Reader, Tomorrow a Leader.”
The free program was created to encourage Peoria’s future workforce to read 20 minutes a day over the summer.
Peoria residents can sign up for the fourth year at Peoria Main Library, 8463 W. Monroe Street, or Sunrise Mountain Library, 21109 N. 98th Avenue, to receive a bookmark to track their reading. The bookmark can be turned in at the end of summer for a chance to win numerous prizes, including Barnes and Noble gift cards, digital reading tablets and one of three complete book sets.
“Helping our children acquire a love of reading is a gift that lasts a lifetime and I’m excited to kick off the summer with this valuable reading program,” Carlat said.
“With amazing events and opportunities to win great prizes over the next couple months, I hope families join us on this reading adventure.”
To encourage participation along the way, Carlat is inviting Peoria readers to fun events throughout the summer. Attendance is tracked on the participant’s bookmark and can be counted as additional entries for prizes. Children who complete their reading and attend all five free events will earn six entries to be submitted for the final program drawing.
The summer events begin with “Dive into Reading” from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 25, at the Sunrise pool, 21321 N 86th Drive. Admission is free and popsicles will be provided. The event will include water safety fun.
From 9 to 10 a.m. Thursday, June 13, at Sunrise Mountain Library, “Reading is Hot” will allow youngsters to be a junior firefighter and spray a real fire hose.
Then, from 9 to 10 a.m. Thursday, June 27, “You Have the Right to Read” at Peoria Main Library. Check out the SWAT Mobile Command Unit and learn about police equipment.
From 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday, July 11, “Reach for Reading” at Rio Vista Recreation Center, 8866 W. Thunderbird Avenue. Kids climb the rock wall for free, and if they reach the book they can win a prize.
Finally, from 10 to 11 a.m. Thursday, July 25, at the Peoria Center for the Performing Arts, 10580 N. 83rd Drive, “Act on Reading” with live on-stage performances of select scenes from the musical “Madagascar Jr.”
For more information, visit a local library or library.peoriaaz.gov.