Chattanooga Now More than 3,500 children, teens and adults signed up for reading programs

Chattanooga Now More than 3,500 children, teens and adults signed up for reading programs

June 24th, 2011 by Lisa Denton in Chattnow Outabout


Downtown: 1001 Broad St.

Eastgate: 5900 Building, 5705 Marlin Road, Suite 1500

Northgate: 278 Northgate Mall Drive

Ooltewah-Collegedale: 9318 Apison Pike, Ooltewah

South Chattanooga: 925 W. 39th St.

The latest best-sellers may have avid readers hanging on every word, but for the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Bicentennial Library, the numbers tell a story.

With another two to three weeks to register for its summer reading programs, participation seems to be on par with last year's figures, said Andria Davis, the library's community relations coordinator.

"As of last Saturday, we have 2,982 children [signed up], which is close to last year's numbers for this point," she said. "Last year we totaled 5,051 kids participating."

The numbers are consistent for older readers as well, with 336 teens and 273 adults registered so far. By the end of registration last year, 449 teens and 414 adults were part of the library's community of summer readers.

Davis said library staff make a push at the end of the school year to get children excited about the kickoff. However, the flexible registration period allows time for families who may miss the initial date and still want to take part. As is usually the case, many are already reading but have yet to fill out the paperwork, Davis said. Those who do are eligible to win prizes.

The scheduling, Davis said, "works around vacations, or some families may have a pattern of when they come in to the library, maybe every two weeks or once a month. This way they still have time to come in and not miss the fun."

This year's themes, set by the Tennessee State Library and Archives, are "One World, Many Stories" for children, "You Are Here" for teens and "Novel Destinations" for adults.

"They're all related to travel and exploring," Davis said.

Picks are wide open, so readers can devour whatever topics suit them. Special programs, such as Dungeons & Dragons parties for teens and gardening workshops for adults, offer opportunities to connect with others who share the same interests.

"It helps get a conversation going," Davis said. "You can make new friends and talk to other people about your passion."

Then you can spend the rest of your time whiling away a summer afternoon.


The Chattanooga-Hamilton County Bicentennial Library sponsors summer reading programs for all ages. Registration may be completed at any branch, with deadlines to register extending into July. Here's how to participate.


Theme: "One World, Many Stories."

Ages: Birth to sixth grade.

Minimum: Children must read or listen to at least 10 books.

Deadline to register: July 16.

Deadline to show logbook: July 23.

Grand finale: July 30. Includes games, crafts, stories, activities and prizes. All participants will receive an achievement certificate and packet of prize coupons, including half-price admission to Lake Winnepesaukah.

More information: 757-5314.


Theme: "You Are Here."

Ages: Grades 6-12.

Minimum: Read at least three books. Additional prizes for teens who read 10 or more books.

Deadline to register: July 16.

Deadline to show logbook: July 30.

Wrap party: Aug. 6. Will include games, crafts, activities and prizes. All participants will receive packet of prize coupons and small prize.

More information: 757-5310.


Theme: "Novel Destinations."

Ages: 18 and older.

Minimum: Read at least three books.

Deadline to register: July 9.

Wrap party: Aug. 13.

More information: 757-5310.


(All take place at Bicentennial Library downtown, 1001 Broad St., unless otherwise noted.)

Saturday: Destination: Space. Talk with Les Johnson, a pop science and fiction author and deputy manager for the Advanced Concepts Office at NASA, 2 p.m.

July 9: Birding program, 1:30 p.m., Eastgate Library.

July 16: Exotic plants and wildflower seedball workshop, 10 a.m.

July 23: Book Club takeoff, 10:30 a.m.


Barnes & Noble: Kids can earn a free book when they read any eight books. Download a journal at, and record the titles of eight books read. Turn in the completed journal at your local Barnes & Noble (inside Hamilton Place) and choose a free book. Parents and educators can download activities and teaching tips at the same site.

Books-A-Million: Children who read four books by Aug. 1 will receive a free Junie B. Jones backpack to take on their own summer adventures. Pick up a Junie B. checklist at one of the four area stores: 2020 Gunbarrel Road in Chattanooga; 5230 Highway 153 in Hixson; 4560 Frontage Road in Cleveland, Tenn.; 816 Walnut Square Blvd., Dalton, Ga.


As part of its Project Ready for School program, the United Way of Greater Chattanooga is partnering with the Chattanooga Recreation Department, Bicentennial Library and Friends of the Library to outfit 17 summer reading centers, including 11 city recreation centers. Enrollment forms for the library's summer reading program are available at each site.