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Park National Bank Supports The Library’s 2024 Summer Reading Program

The Public Library of Mount Vernon and Knox County kicked off its Summer
Reading Program on Friday, May 31 with Park National Bank Vice President Todd Hawkins
presenting a $4,200 check to Library Director John K. Chidester. The Library’s Summer Reading
Program (SRP) offers patrons a variety of fun, educational events for readers of all ages. The
Library presents SRP programs in Mount Vernon, Gambier, Fredericktown, and Danville,
ensuring that kids and teens from all over Knox County can enjoy wholesome, fun activities
accessible in their home communities.

This year’s theme is “The Adventure Begins at Your Library!” and the Children’s Summer
Reading Program explores a number of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts,
Mathematics) activities. The Library will host Sue the Bubble Lady’s “The Wonderful World of
Bubbles” show, which uses everyday household items to create bubbles of all shapes and sizes—
some are even big enough for a child to stand inside. The Library is also hosting Wild World
Zoo, whose educational programs offer teens the chance to interact with and learn about the
natural habitats of many zoo animals. The Works! STEM activities return in 2024, presenting
fun-filled science programs for kids of all ages.

The Teen MakerSpace will team up with the Library’s popular Teen Writing Program to host a
reading and YA book giveaway with celebrated Ohio author Mindy McGinnis. Teens will get a
complimentary copy of McGinnis’ new novel, Under This Red Rock, meet the author, and hear
about her adventures as a writer. Coincidentally, Under This Red Rock is about a teen who has a
job leading tours in the Ohio Caverns— a very adventurous career that echoes the SRP theme
and features a young woman working a STEAM profession.

In keeping with the theme “Adventure Begins at Your Library”, the MakerSpace will present a
series of programs during which teens build their own version of a tabletop choose-your-own-
adventure game. The Teen MakerSpace craft program integrates a variety of art techniques,

crafting skills, and STEAM activities that foster creativity, including writing scenarios and
developing characters, alongside hands-on practical learning. The Teen MakerSpace will lead 5
weekly crafting events during SRP. Using the items they have created during SRP, Teens will
play the game they designed and test out the choose-your-own adventure format as a tabletop
board game that they’ll play during the Teen MakerSpace SRP party.
As in previous years, Park National Bank support provides kids and teens with a complimentary
book that they can select from a wide variety of genres and topics upon reaching their summer
reading goal. Research shows that having access to books at home improves literacy, reading
fluency, and primes young people to become lifelong readers.

“Park National Bank’s sponsorship provides key support for high quality programming and
events for children and teens. Local kids look forward to these every year,” says Jamie Lyn
Smith-Fletcher, Deputy Director of Development, Special Projects and Writing. “We are so
grateful for their support and look forward to a summer of adventure at the Library!”
All Library programs are free and open to the public, and Summer Reading Program registration
for readers of all ages is open throughout the month of June. To register, stop by the Main
Library at 201 North Mulberry Street in Mount Vernon, or visit one of our branch libraries in
Gambier, Fredericktown and Danville. For more information about Summer Reading Program,
visit or call (740) 392-BOOK.

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