WIESBADEN, Germany - "Did you forget how to read this summer?"

Participants in Wiesbaden Library's "Paws to Read" summer reading program were happy to answer a resounding "No" to Library Director Ann Burski's question July 17. The young readers, in grades first through sixth, were at the library to enjoy a host of activities ranging from arts and crafts to stories and field trips.

"We had 57 sign up for this year's program, but far fewer actually attended," said Burski, explaining that youths who turned out for the weekly Thursday program June 26 to July 24 had fun visiting the Opel Zoo, the Wiesbaden Fire Department and exploring the world of literature available on the library's shelves.

"They kept a book log and kept track of the minutes that they read," said Burski. Those with the highest number of minutes in each age group were recognized with prizes and certificates during a ceremony at the library July 24.

Winners are: First grade Lorelei Sampson, second grade Jamie Dawson, third grade Alina Jackson, fourth grade Brandon Dawson. Kindergartner Noah Smith earned an honorable mention. All received a three-foot-tall stuffed dog and other goodies.

Members of the Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers program pitched in to help make a trip to the nearby Opel Zoo a memorable occasion during the program. "We had five BOSS Soldiers who volunteered to escort and talk about the animals with them," Burski said. "We also purchased sacks of carrots for the children to feed the animals. That was really an exciting trip for them."

More field trips

Like the visit to the dining facility which offered youths an opportunity "to see how people cook for a large group of people," she said, a field trip to the fire department gave the young readers a first-hand look at the job of a firefighter. During the visit July 17 the young potential firemen and women took turns spraying the water hose, climbing in and out of a fire truck and riding in an emergency vehicle on the airfield.

"They also worked on crafts with clay and beads," Burski said.

The Wiesbaden Library director said she was looking forward to having more space for activities and get-togethers next year following a library expansion project. "We're hoping by next summer we'll have more space to do more programming and for people to meet. We want it to be a real community center as well as a library."

With an average of some 300-500 patrons a day, Burski said, gaining additional space will be a welcome enhancement.

She also reminded library users that if they can't find a certain book on the shelves, they are more than welcome to request a title from any of the 19 libraries in the U.S. Army Europe library system. "They can request it online and then it'll be sent here for them to check it out."

For more information about the wide range of offerings available at the Wiesbaden Library -- from e-books to CDs, DVDs to traditional hard-backed books -- call civ (0611) 143-548-9821 or visit the library in Building 1029 on Clay Kaserne.

The library is open Monday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For online resources visit www.library.eur.army.mil.

Page last updated Wed July 30th, 2014 at 03:00