Eager readers: Summer reading program encourages youths to read

The Cannon Library staff are taking children on a journey through medieval times during the summer reading program themed A Midsummer Knight’s Read.

The program kicked off May 9 with an event called Once Upon A Hat in which library assistant Loretta Croke began a story about a kingdom and its queen, king, joker and knight.

Croke will read more of the story each week, a small incentive to come back for each event.

The 35 children who attended the event made a king or queen crown, joker hat or knight’s helmet.

Croke said the two-month long program will feature hands-on crafts and, of course, reading.

“You guys are going to be creators this summer,” she told the assembled children.

Croke said children are more apt to read when they get to choose what they read. Summer provides them that opportunity.

“It’s all about encouraging kids to read to keep their minds sharp over the summer,” Croke said. “And to have some fun.”

Children can log reading time by minutes on Cannon Library’s website and win prizes when they meet designated goals.

Miriam Porter said her three children are enrolled in the program for the summer.

“The prizes motivate them more to read,” Porter said. “And gives them stuff to do indoors.”

Porter said she doesn’t often attempt crafts at home so she enjoys that the library has hands-on craft events for the children.

“Something like this is golden,” she said.

Chrissy Eisenbarth said her son Gage Eisenbarth, 5, doesn’t need motivation to read, but he enjoys the prizes.

“It’s something to get him out of the house,” Eisenbarth said. “That prize makes it for him.”

The program runs until July 28 and is free. The program is open to all Cannon Air Force Base youth ages infant through high school.

Staff Sgt. Carlos Guillen, Airmen 1st Class Danielle Gomrick and Chelsea Broussard assisted Croke with the Once Upon A Hat program.