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The Journal Gazette

Thursday, May 30, 2019 8:09 am

ACPL kicks off summer program

Allen County Public Library issued the following news release today:

FORT WAYNE, IN – Magicians, puppet shows, artists, yoga, music, and of course, books – lots and lots of books. When you put all of these things together it can only mean one thing. The Allen County Public Library's Summer Learning Program, known as “SPARK”, is officially underway.

The program, which starts Saturday, June 1 and runs through July 31, emphasizes the importance of reading. However, it also promotes additional activities that help children and adults learn and discover.

“The Library's summer program is designed to stop what we call summer slide. It's the very real loss of knowledge amongst kids who don't engage in learning activities over the summer months,” said Marra Honeywell, Manager of Youth Services for Allen County Public Library.

“We refer to the program as SPARK, which stands for science, play, art, reading, and knowledge,” said Honeywell.

“Reading and literacy are obviously a huge part of our identity as a library. But the reality is, there is so much more involved in learning than reading alone. For kids and adults alike, it's the process of being hands on, of having something catch your interest, sparking a passion. And that's really what we're trying to help foster through our Summer Learning Program,” said Honeywell.

There are prizes for those who participate in various activities or track their reading throughout the summer months. ACPL staff will be giving away 60,000 new books over the next few months as part of the program. Participants in the Summer Learning Program can pick up a form at any branch of the Allen County Public Library or register online at www.acpl.info/spark.

The program is not only for children – teens and adults can sign up as well. The online site also offers a wealth of additional activities, book recommendations, and ways for families to explore and enjoy reading and learning together.

The Library will be offering a variety of programs at each of its 13 branches throughout Allen County and at the Main Library in downtown Fort Wayne. This year's lineup includes African drumming, edible science experiments, story time with a Jedi Master, soccer basics, and much more. For a complete schedule of events, or to learn more about what you can do as a parent or caregiver to fight the summer slide, visit www.acpl.info/spark or call 260.421.1200.

ACP's Summer Learning Program is made possible through the generosity of the Foellinger Foundation, the Friends of the Allen County Public Library, and the Allen County Public Library Foundation.