Summer Reading Program begins Tues., June 6 at Denver Library
Kids of all ages are invited to join the fun at the Denver Public Library this summer! The library has an amazing line-up of programs this summer which include something for everyone; music, nature, science, stories, puppets, and comedy.

Registration for summer reading is open. Registration forms and schedules can be picked up at the library or printed from the library’s website at The library encourages parents to fill out a registration form, even if your child cannot attend all the programs. Registering for summer reading helps the library estimate numbers to plan in advance and helps encourage funding for future programming. All programs are free to attend. Summer reading is open to pre-kindergarten to 5th graders, however younger children are invited to attend with an adult.

This year, the summer reading program runs a little longer and the staff is really excited about the opportunities offered for the kids. The theme of summer reading is “Find Your Voice” and encourages kids to find their passion and the things that interest them, so the library is offering a wide range of programs to help kids explore and learn.

The fun kicks off on Tuesday, June 6 at 1:30 with storyteller Darrin Crow. Darren will keep the kids engaged with his humor and unique storytelling talent! Darrin is from the Cedar Rapids area and this is the first time the library has had him perform.

On Tuesday, June 13, at 1:30 PM, the Eulenspiegel Puppet Theatre is back with beautifully-crafted puppets, whimsical scenery, and music. This professional puppet theatre from West Liberty has been entertaining children and adults for many years. They will perform “Uncle Rabbit’s Big Adventure.” If you have not seen a professionally done puppet show before, you are encouraged to attend this unique opportunity.

Dennis Porter from Kansas City is always a favorite at the Denver Library. His new show, “Super Friends to the Rescue,” combines comedy, improvisation, and interactive fun to encourage kids to work together to find their voice! Dennis will be performing at the library on Tuesday, June 20 at 1:30 PM.

New to the library this year is Duke Otherwise. Duke will have the kids up singing, dancing, and having a roaring good time with his funny songs. Join the library staff for this fun concert on Tuesday, June 27 at 1:30 PM.

Another new program this year will take place on Thursday, July 6 from 1:30 to 3 PM. This is a change in days due to the Independence Day holiday and will be set up as a drop-in program. Kids will have a chance to get up close and personal with several varieties of live butterflies with Absolute Science’s Butterfly experience tents. Three tents will be set up in the library and kids will be able to go in and watch butterflies feed, fly, and even land on their hand. Several interactive displays on butterflies and caterpillars will also be featured.

The fun continues on Tuesday, July 11 at 1:30 PM with Jester Puppets. This silly crew of comedians is also new to the Denver Library. Their shenanigans will certainly have the kids rolling with laughter!

The final day of summer reading will be on Tuesday, July 18 and will feature several fun events! At 1:30 PM, the National Mississippi River Museum will be here with their traveling Sting Ray tank! Kids will learn all about these marvelous creatures and then have the opportunity to pet the live sting rays.

To add to the excitement of the day, the Friends of the Library group will have a bake sale featuring several ocean-themed goodies. Treats will be available to purchase individually or by the plateful. This was a huge hit last year when the library had the shark tank! All proceeds from the bake sale will help fund the following year’s summer programs.

Finally, to round out the final day on July 18, the Friends of the Library will host the annual Glow Swim that evening at Willow Run Swimming Pool. The Glow Swim will take place from 8 to 9:30 pm and the cost per swimmer is $2. Each swimmer will receive a glow necklace to wear. Proceeds from the Glow Swim go towards next year’s summer programs.

The library will also have some special “Pop-Up” events during the summer such as Lego Building, craft activities, and themed story times. Parents can watch for those events on the library’s Facebook page.

“The purpose of the summer reading program is to get kids excited about reading and get them using the library during the summer,” explained Kelly Platte, library director. “The performers we bring in all have a message about the importance of reading in their show. We want kids to stay engaged in learning by finding things that they want to read about and checking out books from the library.”

This year, kids taking part in the summer program will be given the chance to do the “Summer Reading Check Out Challenge!” Kids can keep track of the number of books they check out, read, and return each week to earn small incentives.

The Friends of the Denver Library make it possible for the library to offer the Summer Reading Programs. Without their funding support through the annual book basket silent auction, bake sales, the Glow Swim, and other fundraisers, the library could not afford to offer these quality programs each week. If you are interested in helping the Friends of the Denver Library as a member, helping with an event, or by giving a donation, contact the Denver Public Library.
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