Summer at the library off to a popular start

Published 6:39 pm Friday, June 27, 2014

Huge crowds have been an everyday occurrence during the first month of the Selma-Dallas County Public Library’s annual Sensational Selma Summer programs.

“Last summer, in comparison, we had about 5,500 kids take part in our summer events. At this stage already this year, and we’re only halfway through the summer, we’ve had over 4,000,” said library executive director Becky Nichols. “It’s been an incredible start. We’ve had more than 150 or 200 hundred kids every day for most of our major events.”

Throughout the months of June and July, the library has at least one event for children scheduled each weekday. The events include book readings, craft session, games as well as magic shows and a petting zoo.

Email newsletter signup

While she is happy to see the number of children attending events has risen this year, Nichols said the best part of the events is that many of them are staying after to explore the library.

“The numbers are up, so we know we are doing good work and the people are responding to it,” Nichols said. “The plus, though, is that the kids are checking out books and are using this time to not only have fun, but also to read. They are coming with their families and checking out book after book. It’s been a total success up to this point.”

Nichols said one reason for the increased attendance has been a larger number of churches, daycares and community groups are bringing children to the events this year.

“It’s a great help to have these events to take the kids to during the week,” said Mary Gordon, a resident provider for the Selma Housing Authority. “I try to bring the kids out here every day. It helps me keep them occupied and out of trouble.”

Jokingly, Gordon said she would consider another line of work if the library ever stopped the summer events series.

“I would leave Selma and go somewhere else,” Gordon said. “It’s been very helpful to bring the kids hear every day this summer.”

On Thursday, Gordon brought eight kids she was watching to watch Selma resident Bruce Adams’ balloon show at the library.

Even though his first performance at the library could only be attended by 30 children on Thursday, Adams said he had heard about the successful start to the library’s summer event season.

“This is my first time coming through to do this show, but I’ve heard all about how impressive their numbers have been this year,” Adams said. “I know my show was limited to about 30 kids, but it’s still amazing to hear how well they are doing.”

The Sensational Selma Summer continues through July 25. More information can be found at the Selma-Dallas County Public Library, or by calling the library at 874-1730.