June 3 — The New York Public Library’s annual Summer Reading initiative kicks off on June 4 with a celebration at the Library’s landmark Stephen A. Schwarzman Building on 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue.
The summer-long program encourages kids and teens to read at their local branches throughout the summer to combat “summer slide” while they’re out of school. This year’s festivities, sponsored by HSBC, HBO, The New York Yankees Foundation, and Target, launch the annual city and state-wide initiative.
The celebration will begin in the Library’s Celeste Bartos Forum at 10:30 a.m. and will feature NYPL President Tony Marx, New York State Education Department, Deputy Commissioner for Cultural Education Jeffrey Cannell, and others. There will then be a reading from award-winning, renowned author and illustrator Dan Yaccarino, as well as a performance from celebrated children’s performance group, The Paper Bag Players.
Summer reading participants can register at their local library or on www.summerreading.org
, a fun, interactive site that provides specialized reading lists, reading logs, and a calendar of events throughout the City, as well as badges and avatars for kids. Top summer readers will be honored at Yankee Stadium in an on-field, pre-game ceremony on August 22.
"Every afternoon during the school year, tens of thousands of kids flock to our libraries looking for a safe place to read, do homework, and learn," said New York Public Library President Tony Marx. "With Summer Reading, we continue to help New York City kids learn while they're out of school, all in a fun, competitive atmosphere that we believe instills a love of reading in them that can last for the rest of their lives. We encourage kids across the city to participate, try to read their way to Yankee Stadium and keep learning and growing this summer."
State Education Commissioner John B. King, Jr. noted that summer reading programs allow students to maintain educational advances when not in school. "The Board of Regents and I encourage students across New York to participate in the summer reading programs at their local public libraries. As educators across New York work to implement the new Common Core Standards, it is important that students continue to read while school is not in session,” said Commissioner King. “The Summer Reading at New York Libraries program, supported by the State Library in conjunction with our partners in the State Assembly and Senate, is a great way for students to work towards college and career readiness during the summer and stay academically sharp for the next school year."
Countless children have participated in The New York Public Library’s annual Summer Reading program in the past, which helps prevent “Summer Slide,” or a situation in which children and teens forget the literacy skills that they learned during the school year because they stop reading over the summer.
Second grader Michael Pineda, 8, was one of the top summer readers last year, logging 511 books from his local branch, the Van Cortlandt Library in the Bronx. He was celebrated on the field at Yankee Stadium, and got to meet Yankees outfielder Curtis Granderson.
“I love to read and I loved taking part in the Summer Reading program,” said Pineda. “It was so amazing being able to go to Yankee Stadium through the Summer Reading Program. It was also amazing to go onto the field and shake hands with Curtis Granderson, and then I was able to look at the game after. It was the best day ever!”
The New York Public Library’s Summer Reading Program is generously funded by HSBC; New York Yankees Foundation; The Rona Jaffe Foundation; Target; HBO; Federal Library Services and Technology Act funds, awarded to the New York State Library by the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services; Jean and Louis Dreyfus Foundation; Pine Tree Foundation of New York, Inc.; May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, Inc.; and anonymous donors.
About The New York Public Library
The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 90 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves more than 18 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at www.nypl.org
. To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at nypl.org/support.