Summer Reading: Then vs. Now

I was always a voracious reader as a child. My parents had me reading easy books before beginning kindergarten, and being a chubby little girl with asthma, books were always welcome when it was not always possible to partake in group sports. I was often ahead in school and would be bored when my work was finished, so I always had at least two books on me to choose from to read during my free time.

While I’m certain a summer reading program of some sort was available in my community, growing up in the late 90’s and early 2000’s, I never had the option to enroll. I didn’t actually spend a ton of time at my local library; I was used to visiting for the sole purpose of picking books, checking out, and leaving. My summers were full of the normal activities; educational theatre camps, play dates, swimming at the local pool, terrorizing my younger brother and nanny, etc. I also averaged about two-three hours of reading per day, much to the chagrin of my grandparents with whom I would spend a week.

Thinking back, had I had the opportunity to not only track my reading times and books but to participate in activities at my library, I have a feeling eight-year-old Maddie would have been all about that. Prizes for reading? That’s like being rewarded for breathing!

Even for the less voracious reader, sometimes the idea of incentives and/or a challenge can be a great motivator. I am looking forward to my first Summer Reading Program as a Library Director, and I sure hope you’ll join me. Registration can be found on the Home page of this website, or call us at 701-662-2220. Better yet, stop in and see us!

Maddie Cummings is the Director of Outreach and Innovation at the Lake Region Public Library. Maddie has degrees in musical theatre and music, and was the Program Manager at the Empire Arts Center in Grand Forks before moving to Devils Lake. She lives with her husband, dogs, and cats near downtown and couldn’t be more thrilled to be here.