The first Harry Potter book is now 21 years old and it’s time to celebrate.
From 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 30, the Friends of the Elkhart Public Library will be hosting Harry Potter 21, an all ages event celebrating all things Harry Potter on High Street, outside of the downtown library.
There will be trivia from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., a costume/cosplay contest at 6:30 p.m. and local Harry Potter band Neville’s Diary will take the stage at 7 p.m.
Food vendors Mini Delight’s Bake Shoppe Hotdogeddy’s, ParmaJacos, Kona Ice and Maple Indian Cuisine will be serving up food while cold beer will be on tap from Iechyd Da’s dragon wagon.
“The story is coming of age, so we thought ‘why not throw a party,'” said EPL community engagement coordinator Jill Yoder.
The alley across High Street from the library will serve as the Potter universe’s Diagon Alley, with vendors offering wand making and a real magician showing some tricks, among other activities.
“We wanted to do it on the street in front of our spot downtown. The opportunity to use the alley down to Mini Delights as a Diagon Alley was too good to pass up,” said Yoder.
Centier Bank will serve as Olivander’s Wand Shop and Gringott’s, Potawatomi Zoo will substitute for Eeylop’s Owl Emporium by providing a live owl and other creatures, Stephenson’s will be Madame Malkin’s, selling special t-shirts and Barnes and Noble serving as Flourish and Blotts. Froggy 102.7 FM and Abracadabra Magic will be there as well.
“We tried to pick vendors for Diagon Alley that fit in with the book,” Yoder said.
Entrances to the festival will be at High and Main streets, Second and High streets, the north end of the alley between Lexington and High streets, near the art alley and another near the alley entrance off High Street.
“You only get a chance to celebrate the 21st once,” she said.
While residents are out enjoying the summer weather, they can check out our materials and browse the collection with our pop-up library program.
From 11 a.m. to noon, library materials and staff will be available on select Fridays at McNaughton Park, 701 Arcade Ave. in Elkhart this summer.
Come by and check out the materials, including CDs, DVDs and books, update or sign up for a library card and learn more about the libraries programs. Patrons can also return items to the pop-up library.
August 3 – Canceled
The library is going wild Thursday as Silly Safaris brings their fun and educational animal show to the downtown Elkhart Public Library.
At 1 p.m. Silly Safaris will be showcasing a variety of animals that fit in with the Reading Rocks theme of the summer reading program during their exciting program.
Amazon John, of Silly Safaris, said that he couldn’t reveal what kind of animals will be in the show, he said that it will fit in a theme of nature in music.
“We always travel with a couple of mammals, a bird, a lizard and a bug,” he said. “Come see your favorite animals with feathers, with scales and with fur.”
According to John, the mission of their fun, participatory program is to promote positive interactions between humans and animals.
“Our style is not a show and tell, it’s a high energy, comedy way to show animals, there’s a lot of audience participation and volunteers from the audience that get to help us with what we do,” he said.
Take a book to the stage during Readers’ Theater this summer at the Cleveland Branch.
At 4 p.m. on Thursdays in July (session two), children will pick out a book to read and turn into a performance, making everything from the props to the sound effects.
On the last day, the show will be performed for friends and family.
This is a great program for readers and aspiring performers alike. Registration is required.
The 2018 Summer Reading program will offer exciting prizes that live up to the “Reading Rocks” theme.
Two grand prize winners will win tickets for them and a guest to attend Taylor Swift’s Indianapolis show on Sept. 15 at Lucas Oil Stadium. Hotel accommodations provided by Edgerton Travel are included as well. A third grand prize winner will win a Nintendo Switch. In addition to the grand prizes kids and teens will have a chance to win other prizes – including Elkhart County 4-H Fair wristbands and ukuleles.
Summer Reading begins May 21 at all locations and ElkhartRocks.com.
There will be plenty of fun activities at all EPL branches around the summer reading program including karaoke, live music, crafts and more.
According to Children’s Librarian Chuck Pieri, summer reading is important for young readers to avoid the ‘summer slide,’ that loss of knowledge that occurs over the long summer break from school.
“Reading every day is an important part of education and brain development and kids sometimes read less in the summer, so this will give them an incentive,” Pieri said.
Summer reading will kick off with Eric Litwin’s appearance at Elkhart Community Schools May 15-17 and culminate with a celebration and awarding of the Taylor Swift prize packs on Thursday, July 19 at the Pierre Moran branch.
Kids and teens can participate in summer reading by reading as many books as they can. To enter the grand prize drawings they can submit a written or video book review as often as every week.
To encourage reading every day, kids will also have the chance to track their reading progress with reading chains. Earn a bead for every day you read!
According to Children’s Librarian Allison McLean, summer reading is a win-win because it allows to kids to read what they want while still keeping up on their literacy skills.
“When kids have a choice of what they want to read, they read more and are more excited about it. Summer is a great time to read whatever you want just for the fun and joy of reading,” she said.
Keeping children engaged in reading is an important part of developing a lifelong love of reading to continue development and education.
The grand prizes and fun activities are sure to make this summer one to remember.
“It’s going to be a rockin’ summer,” said Pieri.