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Get ready to fall into teen programs at Rowan Public Library

By Hope Loman

Rowan Public Library

The teen summer reading program is now officially over for another year, which always leaves me with a bittersweet feeling as the young adult librarian. I’m always sad to see the kids leave (many of them are too busy with after school clubs and sports to attend during the rest of the year), but after bouncing between three different libraries for two months to help with high-energy programs, I’m exhausted.

My physical and mental fatigue aside, I am pleased to say that the programs the library held for this year’s “Libraries Rock!” teen summer reading program seemed to be successful, based on the enthusiasm of the participants.

During this summer, teens were able to participate in a range of activities across seven weeks, from the Iron Chef-style cooking competition to making slime and bath bombs, and were even able to see performers from the Nebulux Music School in Spencer and Sakinah Riley, a Rowan County teacher who focuses on West African culture and dancing.

I can’t take any credit — most of the programs were inspired by library blogs like The Ontarian Librarian or the Teen Services Underground Facebook group. And running the programs was only possible with the help of South Branch Librarian Stephanie Reister, East Branch Associate Bethany Hollifield, and Youth Services Supervisor Jennifer Nicholson and Outreach Library Assistant Amanda Brill here at headquarters, who were all a pleasure to work with.

As I mentioned at the beginning of the article, summer reading is over, but there’s still much more teen programming to come in 2018. Starting in September, Rowan Public Library will begin hosting its lineup of fall programs through the end of November, with activities every Tuesday afternoon at Rowan Public Library Headquarters in Salisbury, every Wednesday at the South Rowan Regional Branch in China Grove, and every Thursday at the East Branch in Rockwell.

After consulting with the teen leaders at the East and South branches during the creation process, we believe that the final lineup of programs features events that all teens will enjoy, and hope that middle school and high school readers will come out to some (or all!) of them.

For a small sampling of what is to come, here is the schedule for the month of September:

The first program for the teens will be “Green Screen 101,” where teens will learn about green screen technology and how to create green screen effects with iPads and special apps. Teens will have the opportunity to create their own film projects with the green screen, and completed projects will be featured on RPL’s social media accounts. This event will run from Sept. 4 through 6, from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at all branches.

Next, teens at the headquarters and East branches will be able to show their love of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with “Random Fandom: Marvel Edition.” Teens can eat themed snacks, create their own superhero crafts, and RPL headquarters will screen one of the newer Marvel movies during the program. This event will be at the East Branch on Sept. 13 and run from 4 to 5:30 p.m., and at RPL headquarters on Sept. 11 and run from 4 until 6:30 p.m.

For a teen who is a fan of drawing, or just wants to improve their art skills, we will be hosting “Art-vengers, Assemble!” as we learn how to draw some of our favorite superheroes with step-by-step videos. All art supplies will be provided and artists of all skill levels are welcome to join us from Sept. 18 through 20, from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at each of the library’s branches.

Finally, the East branch and RPL headquarters will host their own zombie programs at the end of September. The East Branch will be putting on “A Night to Dismember,” an escape room experience with multiple rooms and interactive components. Teens can choose to solve the escape with their families, or dress up as zombies and try to stop participants from advancing. This event will be on Monday, Sept. 24, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. For questions or to register as an escapee or a zombie, contact Bethany at 704-216-7842.

At Rowan Public Library headquarters, there will be “Zombies Invade the Library!” a more traditional teen program with no escape room. Teens will create their own zombie costumes (complete with zombie makeup), make zombie slime, and eat some delicious Jell-O brains and other snacks. There is no registration required for this event, which will be on Sept. 25 from 4 to 5:30 p.m.

For more information about these and other future teen programs, be sure to check out our Twitter account @RPL_Teens, or the Rowan Public Library Facebook Page.

SECU Storytime with FAT CAT: South, July 31, 10:30 a.m. It’s never too early for children to begin learning basic finance principles. This storytime, sponsored by the State Employees Credit Union, includes stories and coloring activities. This financial literacy program is free; all ages welcome. For more details, call 704-216-7728.

• Also offered Tuesday, Aug. 7, East, 10:30 a.m.

Book Bites Club: South, July 31, 6 p.m. “Little House on the Prairie” by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Refreshments will be served, and new members are welcome. Questions? Contact Jennifer at Jennifer.Hubbard@rowancountync.gov.

Subway — Share the Color: Headquarters, Aug. 9, 11 a.m. For ages 5-7. Participate in a hands-on sub-making activity and get tips for nutritious eating from Dr. Allison Koch, a registered dietitian from Hickory. The first 30 participants will receive a free sandwich and coloring book. To register, call 704-216-8234.

Displays: Headquarters, Communities in Schools; East, a celebration of African culture by James Rhea; South, handcrafted jewelry by Myrtis Trexler.

Literacy: Call the Rowan County Literacy Council at 704-216-8266 for more information on teaching or receiving literacy tutoring for English speakers or for those for whom English is a second language.

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