Cochise County libraries launch summer reading programs

Cochise County libraries launch summer reading programs

COCHISE COUNTY, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Cochise County’s rural libraries will launch their summer reading programs this month, with a host of fun and interactive activities the whole family can enjoy. The program’s theme is “Universe of Stories” and the libraries in Bowie, Elfrida, Portal, and Sunsites, will be participating.

“This summer’s offerings will be more exciting than ever thanks to grant support and help from community partners,” said Cochise Library District Director Amadee Ricketts, in a recent news release.

She added the program would provide much more than just activities to keep students occupied during their time away from school.

“Reading during the summer months is enjoyable, and it has significant educational value,” said Ricketts. “Research shows that school age children who read for fun during the summer retain more knowledge and skills gained during the school year and return to school ready to learn. Of course, reading has benefits for people of all ages. Public libraries offer summer reading programs to encourage community members to read more, and to read more often.”

Here's what will be offered in the coming weeks:

Bowie’s Jimmie Libhart Library (201 N. Central Ave., 520-847-2522) - The summer reading program will run throughout June and July, with special events on Friday afternoons. Presenters include Wildman Phil, who will bring real wild animals to meet kids on June 14, and the Great Arizona Puppet Theatre, presenting a puppetry workshop on June 21. Children of all ages will earn incentives for reading or being read to.

Elfrida Library (10552 N. Hwy 191, 520-642-1744) – Elfrida’s program will run from June 10 through July 19. Events will include hands-on crafts and science projects, an evening star party, and special guests including Wildman Phil (June 14), and Donna Mime (June 27). Some of the events require advance registration, so please check the event calendar or contact the library for details. Participating children will be entered in a prize drawing at the end of the program, and registration is open now. The Elfrida Library will also offer free summer lunches for kids and teens up to age 17, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays starting June 11. Lunches are provided in partnership with Pearce Elementary School.

Portal’s Myrtle Kraft Library (2393 S. Rock House Rd., 520-558-2468) - The summer reading program will run throughout June and July. Special events will include a hands-on “Create Art from Junk” workshop with Shari Keith, The Junk Lady, on June 14. Reading incentives will also be offered for people of all ages.

Sunsites Community Library (210 N. Ford Rd., 520-826-3866) – Sunsites will host a busy summer reading program from June 10 to July 23. Special events include a weekly book club for kids, toddler play dates on Saturday mornings, and presenters including Donna Mime (June 14) and musician Kelly Rowden (July 19). The library will also offer family movies on Thursday evenings. Program space is limited, so please sign up in advance. Kids who sign up for the reading program will earn “read beads” and other incentives for reading. The library will also offer free lunches for children and teens under 18, on Thursdays and Fridays beginning June 13.

Sunizona’s Alice Woods Library (Ash Creek School, 6460 E. Hwy. 181, 520-824-3145) – Alice Woods Library is housed at an elementary school and offered a Spring Reading Challenge in place of a traditional summer reading program. Readers met their goals during eight weeks of reading.

The 2019 summer reading programs are supported in part by a generous grant from the Toller Fund, held at the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona. The Library District would also like to thank Pearce Elementary School for their support in providing summer lunches at the libraries in Elfrida and Sunsites.

Learn more about the libraries at, or call the Cochise County Library District at 520-432-8930.

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