2013 Champaign-Urbana Area Summer Reading Programs

Who says summer has to be a brain drain?

Some schools may already be out. Other districts are enjoying the last few days, but you can keep your kids learning during the hotter months with some great area summer reading programs. We put together a round-up of as many of them as we could find, and please, if we’ve forgotten one, let us know in the comments.

Summer reading has no age limit. There are programs for kids of all ages, as well as grown-ups. In fact, what a great way to model to your children the importance of reading!

summer reading Champaign Urbana options

It’s time to sign up for summer reading at libraries all over the Champaign-Urbana area! Photo by zetson on Flickr

Champaign Public Library

Participants in the Champaign Public Library’s summer reading programs are divided into three categories: babies through fourth-grade graduates, fifth- through 12th-grade students, and adults. The 2013 theme for readers who are graduates of fourth-grade and younger is “Have Book, Will Travel.”  Special kick-off events featuring acclaimed author Sarah Weeks are scheduled for Saturday, June 1.

Urbana Free Library

The UFL has separate programs for pre-readers, readers and teens, and this year the theme is “Have Book, Will Travel” for all ages. Each group has to complete a certain number of books before winning a free one. Students who read more than the required amount are eligible for drawings for gift certificates donated from local businesses. (Also the case in many of the other libraries’ programs.) A kick-off event for the teen program is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday, May 30 at the library.

Rantoul Public Library

Children from birth through 14 are invited to participate in the kids’ summer reading program, and those aged 15 and older can join the teen and adult program. Kick off event on June 6.

St. Joseph Township-Swearingen Memorial Library

Their reading programs for kids (preschool through fourth grade) and teens (fifth through 12th grade) will begin on June 3 and will end on July 13. There will be a end of Summer Reading Program party on July 19 from 2-4 p.m., for all children who participated in the reading program this summer and all community children who wish to attend. Corny of the Normal Cornbelters will make an appearance from 2-3 p.m.

Tolono Public Library

The Tolono Public Library is kicking off the “Have Book, Will Travel” summer reading program on June 8 at 2 p.m. with a giant bubble artist. There will be a end of the program party on Aug. 3. Read books and earn prizes! Be sure to visit their excellent website for more information about this, and all of the library’s other resources, events, and programs.

Tuscola Public Library

Registration for Summer Read begins, Tuesday, May 28.  Just come into the library and sign up.  The program will begin June 3.

Mahomet Public Library

Mahomet is also participating in the “Have Book, Will Travel” program. There are programs for adults, kids from birth to fifth grade, and teens (sixth through 12th grade). To qualify for prizes, reading must be done between May 27 and July 19. Items read may include books, magazines, and newspapers. You may also have books read to you or listen to audiobooks.

Barnes and Noble Summer Reading Program

Any child entering grades 1-6 in the fall can participate in the Barnes & Noble summer reading program, “Imagination’s Destination.” Read eight books , fill out a Reading Journal (available in-store or online at, and bring the completed log in for a free book.

Did we miss a summer reading program? Please add your favorite in the comments!

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