Explore New Worlds at Prince William Public Libraries

Explore Summer Reading program June 11 – August 11

By Tracy McPeck

Author Sidney Sheldon once said, “Libraries store the energy that fuels the imagination. They open up windows to the world and inspire us to explore and achieve and contribute to improving our quality of life.” Indeed, it is at your public library where you can be educated, entertained, and explore new worlds.

Summer is the perfect time to delve in to all that Prince William Public Libraries offers you, from rewards for reading to hundreds of free events for all ages. Participating in our Explore Summer Reading program (taking place from June 11 through August 11) is free, and kids and young adults don’t even need a library card. We’ve designed it to be easy and inclusive for everyone—no points or minutes to track. Even visiting grandchildren are welcome to participate.

How Explore Summer Reading works:

Kids through rising fifth graders: Receive a Passport when you register for summer reading at your local library or online at www.pwcgov.org/summerreading. Every time you visit the library, tell us what you’re reading, and we’ll stamp your Passport. At two stamps, you’ll receive coupons for free food at local restaurants. At six stamps, you’ll get to pick out a brand-new book to keep. Earn up to nine stamps and you could win a flipbook laptop.

Rising sixth through 12th graders: Receive a Punch Card when you register at your local library or online via the link above. Every time you visit the library, tell us what you’re reading, and we’ll punch your card. At two punches, you’ll receive coupons for free food at local restaurants. And at six punches, you’ll receive a brand-new book to keep. You can also earn up to nine punches for extra entries into the grand prize drawing for an iPad. How? For each book review you write and post to our Explore Summer Reading website, you get another punch. We might even publish your review to our Goodreads page. (www.goodreads/com/pwpls).

Adults, 18+: Why should kids have all the fun? Adults can participate in Explore Summer Reading, too. You don’t even have to register. Whenever you come in to the library, fill out an entry form with the name of a book you’ve read. We will hold a drawing for a Target gift card at each of our eleven branches every week for all nine weeks of the program.

Weekly Challenges: For each week of summer reading, there will be a different challenge at every branch. It might be an interactive display, quiz, or coloring sheet—something easy and fun. We’ll have challenges for kids, young adults, and adults. Complete a challenge and you could win a prize. Prizes will be awarded for each age group at every branch for the duration of the Explore Summer Reading program.

Events & Activities

While our libraries have many free educational and entertaining events all year round, we really ramp it up during the summer. In addition to our regular programs, such as story times, we have special shows from performers all over the East Coast as well as unique presentations from local partners. Following are just a few of the exciting events happening in July at the Haymarket Gainesville Community Library:

Tuesday, July 17

The Hampstead Stage Company presents Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island.

Thursday, July 19

Join us in welcoming the return of Virginia State Trooper Brandon West and his faithful K-9 patrol dog, Chuy.

Week of July 23

Experience Bollywood dance with Rhythmaya, then immerse yourself in the Revolutionary War with the Marine Corps Museum, and the Civil War with the Manassas Battlefield (all in one week – wow!).

The fun continues through August 11 and includes laser tag in the library for young adults, turning the library into a Library of Alexandria-themed escape room, and Dinosaurs with Dinoman. Grownups will have plenty of book clubs (beach reading, anyone?) and Parks and Recreation trivia on July 30.  

The above programs are but a small sampling of the happenings at Haymarket Gainesville Library this summer. For a complete calendar, plus admission information, log on to: pwcgov.evanced.info/eventcalendar.asp?libnum=999

We’d love to see your photos!

Tag us in your Summer Reading: Explore New Worlds fun at the library this summer using the hashtag #PWPLSsummer, and follow us on Facebook (/princewilliampubliclibraries), Instagram (@pwpls), Pinterest (/pwpls), and Twitter (@PrinceWMlibrary).


Tracy McPeck is the Programming and Outreach Coordinator for Prince William Public Libraries. A former youth services librarian, Tracy was the kid who was born with her nose in a book. An extrovert by day, she dabbles in a bit of everything from planning system-wide events for the library, connecting with our community, and tweeting about the library.

Prince William Public Library Staff
About Prince William Public Library Staff 24 Articles
For more information on the Prince William County Public Library, please visit their website or call 703-792-6000.

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