Timberland Regional Library
Library friends play together during an outdoor story time hosted by Montesano Timberland Library. Photo courtesy: Timberland Regional Library

Submitted by Timberland Regional Library

There is still time to liven up summer with reading, exploring, creating and learning as part of Timberland Regional Library’s Summer Library Program ending August 31.

Timberland Regional Library
A young Pacific County library patron shows off the T-shirt she made at home as one of her Summer Library Program activities. Photo courtesy: Timberland Regional Library

Brighten the rest of summer with activities, unique items for checkout, educational resources, in-person programs, and books with Timberland Regional Library’s (TRL) Summer Library Program (SLP), says Jessica Friberg, Timberland Regional Library District Manager – Youth Services and Programs.

“SLP is a fantastic educational tool for parents and their kids,” Friberg said. “Activities that are a part of TRL’s Summer Library Program keep kids engaged in learning and keep their minds stimulated.”

Participating in library activities and events during the summer is one way to help reduce summer learning loss in kids, a phenomenon that happens when the skills students learn during the school year are lost or forgotten over the summer, she said.

This year’s SLP program already has seen a significant rise in the number of people taking part, Friberg said.

“We have seen an increase in people participating in the Summer Library Program this year, especially with the number of free books we have been able to give away when people join the program,” Friberg said.

While TRL won’t have an exact amount until staff begins returning unused books to the service center in September, approximately 10,000 books have been distributed to TRL libraries for the SLP program, Friberg said.

Timberland Regional Library
This ballerina owl rock drawing was presented by a young artist to Aberdeen Timberland Library staff during a Library in the Park event. Photo courtesy: Timberland Regional Library

TRL also has been able to once again begin offering services such as in-person programs at many of the libraries, Friberg said, which has added to SLP participation.

SLP includes activities that can be enjoyed by all ages, such as StoryTrails, as well as a wide and varied selection of print, digital and audiobooks, Friberg said. StoryTrails are one of several activities offered by TRL that encourage participants to experience nature in the surrounding parks and across Washington.

Library staff from across the five counties serviced by TRL, including Thurston, Mason, Lewis, Grays Harbor, and Pacific counties, shared stories about how patrons have taken part in this year’s SLP.

“I had a little child come up to me, really excited to let me know that he’d finished his ten things,” said Carolynn Winningham, a library assistant at Amanda Park Timberland Library. “He let me know everything that he’d done and that he was super excited to see if we still had the book he wanted for his second pick. We did!”

Packwood Library Manager Judi Brummett shared a story from her library about patrons from another county.

Timberland Regional Library
A young library patron holds a giant library card during a Summer Library Program Lacey in Tune event on July 19 at Huntamer Park in Lacey. Lacey in Tune is an entertainment program held in partnership between Lacey Timberland Library and the City of Lacey Parks, Culture, and Recreation Department. Photo courtesy: Timberland Regional Library

“A couple from Olympia stopped to let their dog run in the park and checked out our StoryTrail, which features ‘Old Rock is Not Boring’,” Brummett said. “They called later to commend staff on the selection of the book and accuracy of our supplemental boards – they are both geologists and said it was perfect!”

Friberg said these stories show that SLP really is for all ages.

“I’m looking forward to seeing more people join us as we continue to expand in-person programs this fall, including favorites such as storytime,” Friberg said.

There also continues to be a variety of programs offered online through Zoom and Take-N-Make activity kits available for pickup at some locations.

To take part in the Summer Library Program, library-goers can visit any one of the 29 TRL locations in Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason, Pacific and Thurston counties to receive a free book and an activity log.

Participants can track their TRL Summer Library Program activities on their paper log or digitally on the Beanstack website or after downloading the Beanstack app.

Once ten activities are completed, submit your digital log online or turn in your paper log and receive a certificate of completion and, while supplies last, a second free book.

Some of the activities that are part of the TRL Summer Library Program include:

Timberland Regional Library
Hoquiam Timberland Library patron Barrett Caskey shared his activity log for the Summer Library Program. Photo courtesy: Timberland Regional Library
StoryTrails – Participants can walk a local trail and read a picture book as a fun and engaging way to combine a love of nature and a love of reading. Visit the TRL website for a list of locations and more information.
Take-’N-Make activity bags – These crafts, to be created at home, include supplies and directions and are available for a variety of ages at selected locations while supplies last.
Zoom Storytimes – Anyone, anywhere can join our expert storytime providers and other families live on Zoom. Check out Family Storytime and Bilingual Time/La hora bilingüe to find storytimes in English and Spanish.
Library of Things – Patrons can check out and explore unique natural environments throughout Washington, test a product or take up a new hobby with items from TRL’s Library of Things collections.
Youth and Senior Connect Boxes – These tubs are filled with 55-70 books that are available for loan to community centers, health care agencies, before- and after-school programs, head start locations, preschools, daycare centers, day camps and youth groups.
Grab Bag – Patrons can share what they love to read, listen to or watch, and library staff will put together a library grab bag of personalized materials. A grab bag form is available online and grab bags can be created for all ages and reading levels.
Those interested in the Summer Library Program can visit the events calendar on the Timberland Regional Library website for a full list of summer activities for all ages. They also can download an activity log or the Beanstack app from below:


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