Mesa Public Library begins its summer reading program with opening activities

Summer reading programs are open to all ages from infants through adults at all four branches of the Mesa Public Library with the program starting Friday, June 1 and running through Wednesday, Aug. 1.

There are three opening events at three of the branches: Main Branch, 64 E. First St.; Red Mountain Branch, 635 N. Power Road; and the Dobson Ranch Branch, 2425 S. Dobson Road. Mesa Mayor John Giles is scheduled to be at the Main Branch.

At the Red Mountain Branch, there will be a Pete the Cat-themed concert by The Polka Dots, a local children’s band. This branch will also host a variety of activity booths.

Residents going to the Dobson Branch can also make their own musical instrument, according to a press release.

“Most people don’t realize that our summer reading programs are open to adults as well as children,” Mesa Librarian Cherise Mead said in a prepared statement. “We want to make summer reading a family affair and encourage parents to join in on reading with their kids.”

Studies have shown that students who participate in a summer reading program have better reading skills at the end of third grade and score higher on standardized tests than students who do not participate, a release states.

Summer reading loss is also cumulative — by the end of 6th grade, children who consistently lose reading skills over the summer will be two years behind their classmates. Reading just five books over the summer can prevent summer learning loss, according to a release.

All participants will need to register online at to log their reading hours. Every minute spent reading equals one point. There are various prizes and coupons available, while supplies last, when achieving certain point levels.

Participants can also earn points and virtual badges by attending Library programs. Weekly drawings and prizes will also be held at the Library. Earn 1,000 points to complete the program and receive a free book. People earning 1,000 points are also eligible for a drawing to win Kindle Fire tablets.

The Apache Junction Independent is mailed each month to 35,000 homes.

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