Many activities around the Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield communities have been restricted due to COVID-19 preventive measures, to include the George P. Hays Library on Fort Stewart.The library closed its facility to the public in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but library technicians continue to provide patrons with a variety of services.Among those services are summer reading programs that maintain literacy skills in youth aged community members.“Children who don't read over the summer tend to slip back on their read¬ing skills, so they start their new school year almost at a disadvantage,” said Jacqueline Chappell, George P. Hays Library director. “That's one big thing about having a summer reading pro¬gram is keeping kids engaged, reading and keeping their skill level up.”The library’s summer reading pro¬gram rewards a prize to top readers in each of four age categories. Since local school districts have delayed the opening of schools, Chappell has extended the summer reading program to Aug. 31, to give participants more time to be able to log their time and earn prizes.Rather than the traditional method of going to the library to find a book, readers can access the library’s online catalog for a specific title, then call to place an order. Library staff pull the book and call back when the order is ready to be picked up.The library parking lot now has designated spots for curbside service. Library staff wearing face mask and gloves assist patrons at their vehicles.Another option is to call the library for a surprise bag.“Just call up and say, ‘I’ve got two kids, one is 5 and one is 10; they like dinosaurs’, or just give us an idea of a topic, “ said Celine Matthews, a library technician. “Our staff will go and pull relevant items and put a bag together to be picked up.”In addition to books, patrons can also check out video games and movies. Army library account holders have access to more than 40 databases for research on car repair to ancestry, from children’s books to academics.To discover all that the library has to offer, visit StewartHunter.ArmyMWR.com, and follow George P. Hays Library at Fort Stewart on Facebook.