May 7, 2018

Library kicks off Summer Reading Challenge on June 2

Rebranded program to focus on educational benefits of summer reading

COLUMBUS—Columbus Metropolitan Library (CML) kicks off its annual Summer Reading Challenge on Saturday, June 2. Beginning that day, participants can sign up and track their reading progress from home, as well as earn badges and prizes, play fun games and learn valuable tips to help early readers. The nine-week program runs through Saturday, Aug. 4. All participants will need a CML library card to sign up. Visit for more information.

CML welcomes the central Ohio community to enjoy a family-friendly celebration at Main Library (96 S. Grant Ave.) from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 2. People of all ages will enjoy activities, games, music and food – plus be able to sign up for Summer Reading Challenge or learn how to do it at home.

The kickoff celebration will also feature two lively performances from musician and storyteller Jim Gill at 11 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. Summer Reading Challenge and all its events are free and open to all.

Formerly known as Summer Reading Club, CML has rebranded the program to Summer Reading Challenge to emphasize the educational – as opposed to recreational – aspect of summer reading.

Studies show that kids who read during the summer maintain reading skills that are critical to future school success. The Third Grade Reading Guarantee in Ohio means many central Ohio third graders could repeat the grade if they don’t pass state proficiency testing. This makes summer reading even more important, which is why, in addition to Summer Reading Challenge, CML locations will continue to offer Reading Buddies practice sessions throughout the summer months.

Last year, 60,000 children, teens and adults participated in Summer Reading Challenge, which includes more than 1,000 programs to enrich learning.

CML’s Summer Reading Challenge relies on its VolunTeens to help sign up customers and help with programs. Teens can sign up on CML’s Volunteer page. It’s a great way for 12-17-year-olds to start building professional skills they can put on resumes. VolunTeen registration often fills up at CML’s bigger locations and is first come, first served.

This year’s sponsors include Kiwanis Club of Columbus, Friends of the Columbus Metropolitan Library, Dispatch Media Group, Lamar, Sunny 95, QFM 96, ABC6, Fox-28, CW Columbus, Rinkov Eyecare Centers, Highlights for Children and Columbus EWI.

Columbus Metropolitan Library has served the people of Franklin County, Ohio since 1873. With its Main Library and 22 branches, CML is well known for signature services and programs like Homework Help Centers, Reading Buddies, Summer Reading Challenge and Ready for Kindergarten. The library’s Strategic Plan supports the vision of “a thriving community where wisdom prevails,” which positions CML to respond to areas of urgent need: kids unprepared for kindergarten, third grade reading proficiency, high school graduation, college and career readiness and employment resources.

CML was named a 2011 National Medal Winner by the Institute for Museum and Library Services for work in community service, the highest honor for libraries and museums. CML was also named 2010 Library of the Year by Library Journal.