SYCAMORE – Treasures await readers willing to travel through books to other places and worlds.
The DeKalb, Genoa, Hinckley and Sycamore libraries are holding summerlong reading programs for adults, teenagers and children, and offering prizes to those who take part.
“Have Book – Will Travel” is this year’s theme for the DeKalb, Hinckley and Genoa libraries, with a focus on traveling to faraway places. The theme was an option for local libraries with summer reading programs after they were issued a federal grant to buy travel-related books and guides, said Sally DeFauw, DeKalb Public Library reference librarian.
DeFauw, who runs the adult and teenager reading program for DeKalb, said the library has been decorated with directional signs pointing to “Literature Lane” or “Reference Ridge” to reflect the travel theme. Readers will place completed reading logs in a box decorated like a suitcase with vintage travel stickers.
Adults and teenagers can win one of 18 gift certificates to a restaurant that will be raffled off; participants get a raffle ticket for every five books they log.
“That’s why we’re encouraging them to read as much as they can because it increases their chances to win,” DeFauw said.
The library’s program for those younger than 18 is broken into four groups, with participants eligible for prizes depending on the requirements of their group. The grand prize is a bike from North Central Cyclery.
The Sycamore Public Library held a travel-themed event already this year, so its program has a digging theme, said Katherine Keyes, assistant director for the library. The program for children is “Dig Into Reading,” while the one for teenagers is “Beneath the Surface.”
The Hinckley Public Library also will hand out prizes to children and adults who submit a reading log. Children submitting reading logs in June and July can enter the Sun Fair, a carnival held at the end of the program, said Kate Ross, Hinckley Youth Services librarian. Smaller prizes, such as museum passes or vouchers for the Kane County Cougars, are available to those who turn in weekly reading logs.
The adult program encourages participants to read genres they haven’t read before, Ross said.
“If you really like romance, we see if you want to read nonfiction,” Ross said.
Participants who take part in that aspect can get extra tickets for a raffle, with prizes including Kindles, gym memberships and books, Ross said.
Ross said summer reading helps maintain literacy levels and prepares children for the next school year.
“We’re trying to bridge that gap so they’re not at a lower level when they start school again,” Ross said.