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Category: Children

JULY 11, 2014
Building Blocks Series
The first 1000 days of a child’s life will influence his or her future academic achievement greatly. A child’s brain is only about 25% developed at birth and develops to about 85% at age 3, or about 1000 days old. Marathon County’s Early Years Coalition is taking proactive steps to ensuring parents have information and support for those first 1000 days so they raise great kids. The Wausau Daily Herald interviewed members of the coalition in the hopes of spreading the word about what parents can do to ensure their child is healthy, safe, ready for school, and great! Check out the links to other episodes and information to see how you can raise a great child in Marathon County.

New episodes will air Fridays until August 15. Visit for the latest videos.



Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Taylor Weinfurter / Library Services

Categories: Early LiteracyChildrenWausau Daily Herald


MAY 30, 2014
Develop your child's self-esteem through reading
Developing self-esteem is important to children because confidence will help them in school and life in general. You start developing your child’s self-esteem at birth by being responsive--talking, singing, reading, and being playful. These are also practices that will set foundations for your child’s reading readiness! By being responsive, your child will start to understand who they are and what they do matters to "the world"-- a.k.a. you, the caregiver! By interacting and responding to your child, he or she responds, and you respond back.  As your interactions continue, the child’s self-esteem and trust in you as a caregiver grows and gains strength. For more information about childhood self-esteem and its importance, visit

Here are some books to share with your child about self-esteem and some parenting titles on how to raise children with positive self-esteem: 

Children’s Books
Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae
Little Blue Truck Leads the Way by Alice Schertle
Hooray for You!: A Celebration on “You-ness” by Marianne Richmond
I Like Myself! by Karen Beaumont
Square Cat by Elizabeth Schoonmaker
It’s Okay to Be Different by Todd Parr
I’m Gonna Like Me by Jamie Lee Curtis
A Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon
My Brave Year of Firsts by Jamie Lee Curtis
Learning How to Feel Good About Yourself by Susan Kent

Parent Books
200 Ways to Raise a Girl’s Self-Esteem by Will Glennon
501 Ways to Boost Your Child’s Self-Esteem by Robert Ramsey
Keys to Developing Your Child’s Self-Esteem by Carl Pickhardt
Parent Talk: Words that Empower, Words That Wound: How to Talk to Your Children in Language that Builds Self-Esteem and Encourages Responsibility by Chick Moorman
You Are Special: Words of Wisdom from America’s Most Beloved Neighbor by Fred Rogers
Help Your Kids Get it Done Right at Home and at School!: Building Responsibility and Self-Esteem in Children by Donna Genett

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Categories: ChildrenParents Books


APRIL 28, 2014
Interact With Your Child With Wordless Picture Books

Your child needs positive human interaction to fully develop physically, mentally, and emotionally. Human interaction includes simple tasks such as talking, singing, playing, writing and reading; the five suggested practices to get your child ready to read! Through human interaction, your child’s brain will develop to its fullest potential and he or she will feel loved and be more willing to learn, listen and grow.

How can you interact with your child? Below are a few ideas:

  • Play with your child outside, or play make believe inside
  • Talk with your child about his or her day, favorite color, or anything you can think of!
  • Sing favorite songs, sing sentences in books, or make up silly songs that rhyme together
  • Write your child's name, allow him or her to scribble with chalk, or draw pictures together
  • Read books together, point out the letters in different signs you see outside, and read even more!

Wordless picture books are a great way to promote parent-child interaction. Books without words may seem intimidating and strange, but have your child tell the story based on the illustrations and ask different questions as you move through the story. Using wordless picture books will encourage your child to talk, interpret pictures, and use his or her imagination. Below is a list of wordless picture books (or books that contain very few words) that will encourage interaction through talking:

(from the MCPL Newsletter, May-Jul., 2014)

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Categories: ChildrenParents Early Literacy


APRIL 23, 2014
Summer Story Time Changes
Summer is fast approaching, and as usual, there will be some changes to the regular story time schedules at most MCPL locations. Most branches will take a break from their story times to focus on Summer Library Program events. At MCPL Wausau, we'll be taking a break from story times in May to focus on school tours, and we've added a unique, summer-only story time ("Sweet Dreams").

Additionally, special children's events will supersede concurrent story times (particularly "Tales for Tots" at Wausau), but don't let that stop you from visiting the library -- there will be plenty of fun and learning for your child in either case.

As always, the story time schedule is viewable at, but we've also copied it below with the forthcoming changes underlined and colored red. 

Family Story Time
  • MCPL Wausau — Saturdays, 10:30am (year-round) (no meetings 5/4 - 6/7)
  • MCPL Athens — Tuesdays, 10:00am (year-round)
  • MCPL Edgar — Thursdays, 9:30am (Sep.-May) (ends 5/8/14; resumes 9/?/14)
  • MCPL Hatley — Tuesdays, 10:30am (year-round)
  • MCPL Marathon City — Thursdays, 10:30am (Sep.-May) (ends 5/15/14; resumes 9/11/14)
  • MCPL Mosinee — Wednesdays, 10:00am (Sep.-May) (ends 5/7/14; resumes 9/10/14)
  • MCPL Rothschild — Tuesdays, 10:30am (year-round)
  • MCPL Spencer — Wednesdays, 10:00am (Sep.-May) (ends 5/21/14; resumes 9/10/14)
  • MCPL Stratford — Wednesdays, 10:15am (Sep.-May) (ends 5/14/14; resumes 9/10/14)
"Sweet Dreams" Story Time

  • MCPL Wausau — Mondays, 6:30pm (Jun.-Aug.) (starts 6/16/14; ends 8/18/14)
"Play & Learn" Story Time

  • MCPL Wausau — Fridays, 9:30am (year-round)
  • MCPL Hatley — Thursdays, 10:00am (year-round)
  • MCPL Mosinee — Wednesdays, 10:30am (year-round)
Preschool Story Time
MCPL Wausau — Wednesdays AND Thursdays, 10:30am (year-round) (no meetings 5/4 - 6/7) -- Note: During the summer (Jun.-Aug.), we welcome children of all ages to this story time, effectively making this a "Family Story Time."

Tales for Tots
MCPL Wausau — Tuesdays, 9:45am AND 10:30am (year-round) (no meetings 5/4 - 6/7; due to concurrent children's programs, this story time will only meet 6/10, 7/1, 7/29, 8/5 and 8/12.) -- Note: During the summer (Jun.-Aug.), we welcome children of all ages to this story time, effectively making this a "Family Story Time."

Book Babies
MCPL Wausau — Mondays, 10:00am (year-round) (no meetings 5/4 - 6/7) -- Note: During the summer (Jun.-Aug.), we welcome children of all ages to this story time, effectively making this a "Family Story Time."

Daycare Story Time
No meetings will be scheduled June-August.

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Ben Krombholz / Support Services

Categories: ChildrenProgramsStorytimes


APRIL 7, 2014
Potty Training Booklist
Are you trying to tackle the task of potty training your child? Check out the titles below to share with your child. The Family Resource Center is also available to answer questions and provide support while potty training. 

No More Diapers for Ducky 
On Your Potty, Little Rabbit
Caillou: No More Diapers
Calliou: Potty Time
Dinosaur vs. the Potty
Have You Seen My Potty?
Ian's New Potty
My Big Girl Potty
The Prince and the Potty
My Potty Book for Boys
Pete's Potty
Duck Goes Potty
A Potty for Me!
Tinkle, Tinkle, Little Tot: The Toilet Training Songbook
You Can Go to the Potty
Your New Potty
Once Upon a Potty: Boy
Once Upon a Potty: Girl


Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Taylor W.-MCPL Library Services

Categories: ChildrenBooksParents


FEBRUARY 17, 2014
Show Your Child Affection, Especially While Reading
Make an extra effort to show affection to your child, especially while reading. Kids need a nurturing, healthy relationship to prosper academically. When your child feels loved, he or she is more willing to learn, listen, and grow and will therefore do better in school! Visit for more information.

Reading is a great way to show your child affection. Have your child sit on your lap while you read, read and snuggle before bedtime together or, if your child is a baby or toddler, attend a lap-sit story time. All of these activities promote parent-child bonding and early literacy.

Check out these picture books about affection that you can share with your child:
1, 2, I Love You by Alice Schertle
Daddy Calls Me Doodlebug by JD Lester
Do You Love Me? by Joost Elffers
Kiss, Tickle, Cuddle, Hug by Susan Musgrave
I Love You, Little One by Nancy Tafuri
Count My Kisses, Little One by Ruthie May and Tamsin Ainslie
I’ll Always Love You by Peaony Lewis
I Love You All Year Long by Steve Metzger
Love You Forever by Robert Munsch
Hug by Jez Alborough

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Categories: ChildrenReadingStorytimes


JANUARY 24, 2014
2014 Early Literacy Calendar

Helping your child get ready to read is easy! Just do one fun activity from this calendar each day. Plus, sign up for our 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program. Ask your children's librarian for more tips and ideas to promote pre-reading skills in your child.


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Categories: ChildrenEarly Literacy


JANUARY 20, 2014
Parenting series

Starting in February, several Marathon County Public Library locations will host programs aimed at promoting positive parenting skills, Internet safety and encouraging quality family time.

Our MCPL Parenting Series begins with a presentation by Aaron Ruff of the Marathon County Health Department about The Real Happy Hour, a multi-agency effort to share resources and ideas that promote and encourage families to spend quality time together.

Other programs cover safety, both online and at home. The “Raising Safe Kids” program, held at both the Rothschild and Wausau MCPL locations and presented by staff from Marathon County Social Services, covers personal and traffic safety, and tips on how to stay safe when home alone. Angela Diener of the Boys & Girls Club of Wausau will present “NetSmartz for Tweens” at our Wausau and Stratford locations, which covers cyberbullying, safe use of emails and instant messaging, identity theft and other online security topics.

Becky Mroczenski of the Marathon County Health Department will lead a presentation on childhood vaccines in March, and in April, Linda Salzman from the Family Resource Center will share ways to communicate with and discipline children without yelling.

Call 715-261-7220 for more information, or watch for updates.

(from the MCPL Newsletter, Jan. - Mar., 2014)

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Chad Dally / MCPL Library Services

Categories: ChildrenNewsletterPrograms


DECEMBER 11, 2013
Holiday Story Time Break
Due to the holiday season, all MCPL locations will be taking a break from all regularly scheduled story times. The Edgar branch will start this break the week of December 16, and all other MCPL locations will break December 22, 2013-January 4, 2014. All regularly scheduled story times will resume the week of January 6, 2014.

Even though there are no story times, there are still plenty of things to do at the library! You can do puzzles, play games, read books, and check out book bundles to put on your own story time at home. Book bundles come with a set of themed books and an early literacy sheet with suggested songs, fingerplays, and activities to get your child ready to read.

Happy holidays and we will see you story timers in 2014!


Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Taylor W.-MCPL Library Services

Categories: ChildrenStorytimes


NOVEMBER 18, 2013
December marks one year for the Phyllis Donner Aquarium!
In December, MCPL Wausau celebrates the first anniversary of its 650-gallon, saltwater aquarium filled with tropical fish and other sea creatures.

The aquarium officially opened on Dec. 5, and was funded through a generous donation from the estate of Phyllis Donner. Las Vegas-based aquarium company Acrylic Tank Manufacturing built the aquarium, which is home to dozens of fish, crustaceans, coral and other aquatic life typically seen solely through the lens of a scuba mask.

Over the past year, some fish have more than doubled in size, and several species of coral have taken hold and started to create reefs. Darren Letner of Wausau maintains the aquarium and said he’s happy to see so many fish flourishing because they come from all over the world – and sometimes don’t survive the journey to the United States. Letner also said the aquarium’s popularity is obvious, especially among the library’s youngest patrons.

“When the kids see it, they just get lost in it,” he said.

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Categories: ChildrenNewsletter


SEPTEMBER 24, 2013
Traveling Tales Story Kits are Back!
Traveling Tales kits are new, improved and ready to use! Now stored in clear, easy to carry bags, our kits have endured a makeover and are available for checkout. Located in the children’s department in Wausau, Traveling Tales include themed books, CDs and in some, a puppet. These kits are a great tool for parents, homeschooling families, and daycares. Traveling Tales help promote early literacy and reading readiness for little ones in a fun and exciting way. Check out a kit or put one on hold today!

Find "Traveling Tales" in the Library Catalog (V-Cat):

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Categories: ChildrenBooksReading


SEPTEMBER 23, 2013
"Exploration Station" offers hands-on learning!
The library wants to help preschoolers get a jump on learning with its monthly Exploration Station classes. Preschool-age children and their caregivers can work together on interactive activities designed to build skills in reading, math, science and writing on the second Wednesday of each month, 10:30–11:30 a.m., at the library’s Wausau Headquarters.

There is no cost to participate, but class sizes are limited. To register or for more information, call 715-261-7220.
  • Math / Oct. 9 & Feb. 12
  • Science / Nov. 13 & Mar. 12
  • Reading / Dec. 11 & April 9
  • Writing / Jan. 8

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Chad Dally / Library Services

Categories: NewsletterChildrenParents


AUGUST 29, 2013
Reading Aloud to Your Child

Mem Fox's book Reading Magic inspired the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program. 

When reading aloud to your child, try Mem Fox’s Ten Read Aloud Commandments:

1. Spend at least ten wildly happy minutes every single day reading aloud.
2. Read at least three stories a day: it may be the same story three times. Children need to hear a thousand stories before they can begin to learn to read.
3. Read aloud with animation. Listen to your own voice and don’t be dull, or flat, or boring. Hang loose and be loud, have fun and laugh a lot.
4. Read with joy and enjoyment: real enjoyment for yourself and great joy for the listeners.
5. Read the stories that the kids love, over and over and over again, and always read in the same ‘tune’ for each book: i.e. with the same intonations on each page, each time.
6. Let children hear lots of language by talking to them constantly about the pictures, or anything else connected to the book; or sing any old song that you can remember; or say nursery rhymes in a bouncy way; or be noisy together doing clapping games.
7. Look for rhyme, rhythm or repetition in books for young children, and make sure the books are really short.
8. Play games with the things that you and the child can see on the page, such as letting kids finish rhymes, and finding the letters that start the child’s name and yours, remembering that it’s never work, it’s always a fabulous game.
9. Never ever teach reading, or get tense around books.
10. Please read aloud every day, mums and dads, because you just love being with your child, not because it’s the right thing to do. 

Check out Mem Fox's read-aloud techniques available on the website, Reading Is Fundamental @ 


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Categories: ChildrenReading


AUGUST 15, 2013
SMART board
Parents and kids!
Become SMARTer about the SMART board and learn about all the many ways you can learn on it!
A SMART board is available in the children’s activity room @ MCPL headquarters.
The SMART board combines the simplicity of a white board with the power of a computer (

Kids naturally gravitate to the ease of the touch screen. Children’s excitement in ‘operating’ the SMART board boosts their self-esteem and builds confidence in science and technology and aids them to work independently at a later time (Teaching Science magazine, June ‘08).

Are you interested in learning what else you can do besides “draw and doodle” on the interactive white board? The children’s dept. staff is happy to offer impromptu tutorials on the wonders of the SMART board. You can stop by to get a quick overview or schedule a session with our friendly children’s dept. staff.

Not only can you draw but there are also fun and educational activities and games that you can play. These are offered through the SMART exchange website. Teachers and other educators have designed and shared their educational activities through the SMART exchange website (
Staff members searched through these resources and made it easy for you to access some of these age-appropriate games and teacher recommended activities suitable for kids of all ages. 
Stop by the MCPL Wausau children’s desk to learn about the wonders of the SMART board!


Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Marissa/Children's Services

Categories: Childrentechnology


JULY 31, 2013
Exploration Station Registration is Open

Exploration Station is a new program being offered for children at the Wausau Headquarters Library beginning this September. It is a hands-on curriculum based class for preschool children ages 4-6 that features rotating lab activities in the core areas of math, science, reading, and writing. It is a participatory class where a child and his/her parent/caregiver work together as a team. It is not a storytime.

Each class begins with a discussion and stories about the theme and then breaks into smaller groups that rotate to lab stations to complete activities at each of the 5 stations. Children spend 5-6 minutes at each station. Caregivers are given the tools that they need to create a dialogue with the child about what is being learned and experienced. A craft related to theme is included in each session. At the end of class groups discuss what they have learned.

Classes are listed below. Register both you and your child (715-261-7220) for one class or all. Class size is limited to 25 teams of parent/caregiver and child.

Exploration Station Classes-- Fall/Winter 2013

  • September 11 Writing
  • October 9 Math
  • November 13 Science
  • December 11 Reading

Exploration Station Classes--Winter /Spring Sessions 2014

  • January 8 Writing
  • February 12 Math
  • March 12 Science
  • April 9 Reading

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Sharyn Heili, Youth Services

Categories: ChildrenPrograms


JULY 22, 2013
Update: Story Times
Enjoy learning with your children through stories, songs and literature-based activities! Several story times were discontinued for the summer and will resume on the dates given below. Also, Wausau's "Sweet Dreams" story time and Rothschild's Friday story time will be discontinued soon.

Recurring weekly:

Family Story Time (all ages)
  • MCPL Wausau — Sat., 10:30am [Resumes 9/21/13]
  • MCPL Athens — Tue., 10am
  • MCPL Edgar — Thu.,  9:30am [Resumes 9/19/13]
  • MCPL Hatley — Tue., 10:30am
  • MCPL Marathon City —Thu., 10:30am [Resumes 9/12/13]
  • MCPL Mosinee — Wed., 10am [Resumes 9/11/13]
  • MCPL Rothschild -- Tue., 10:30am
  • MCPL Rothschild -- Fri., 10:30am [Ends 7/26/13]
  • MCPL Spencer — Wed., 10am [Resumes 9/11/13]
  • MCPL Stratford — Wed., 10:15am [Resumes 9/11/13]
Preschool Story Time (4-5 years old)

  • MCPL Wausau — Wed. & Thu., 10:30am
Tales for Tots (2-3 years old)

  • MCPL Wausau — Tue., 9:45am & 10:30am 
Book Babies (0-23 months old)

  • MCPL Wausau — Mon., 10:00am
“Play & Learn” Story Time

  • MCPL Wausau — Fri., 9:30am
“Sweet Dreams” Story Time 

  • MCPL Wausau — Mon., 6:30pm [Ends 8/12/13]

(from the MCPL Newsletter, Jul-Sep., 2013)

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Ben Krombholz / MCPL Library Services

Categories: ChildrenStorytimesNewsletter


JULY 22, 2013
Update: Summer Library Program
There’s still time to participate!

Summer events continue throughout August, featuring engaging, informative presentations and activities for all ages. Upcoming events include movie nights, workshops, crafts and a pool party! 

Also, adults and teens still have time to vote in our Literary Smackdown competition to pick the most influential book in Marathon County:

Reading logs for children and teens will be accepted through Aug. 24. Prizes are available throughout the summer for completing each excavation dig!

(from the MCPL Newsletter, Jul-Sep., 2013)

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Chad Dally / MCPL Library Services

Categories: Summer Library ProgramChildrenNewsletter


JULY 22, 2013
1,000 Books Before Kindergarten
The Marathon County Public Library is challenging parents to read more books aloud with their children! The "1,000 Books Before Kindergarten" initiative is meant to introduce children to a wide range of literature, encourage families to spend quality time together and promote pre-literacy and learning so children enter school ready to read, listen and learn.

Although 1,000 books sounds like a huge number, consider this: If you read one book a day, you could finish in less than three years. Ten books per week? Less than two years. We’ll give you more tips and suggestions, too.

Families who register will receive a folder with a sheet to record each 100 books, a garden sheet, and instructions. Incentives include stickers, books and book bags, and a “graduation party” for those who complete 1,000 books.
(from the MCPL Newsletter, Jul-Sep., 2013)

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Categories: ChildrenBook ClubsNewsletter


JUNE 26, 2013
Looking for educational games and apps for your kids this summer?
Common Sense Media has just unveiled a new website that makes searching for the best educational games and apps easier. The site,, is designed for teachers, but parents will enjoy its streamlined site as well. The site provides an easy search for educational games, apps and websites based on subject area and grade level.

Common Sense Media, an independent, non-partisan nonprofit provides trustworthy reviews about media and technology for kids and families. Their website, rates media for children on quality and learning potential.

Common Sense Media's reviews allow busy parents to gather lots of info about a game in a few seconds. A snapshot look at the game’s content gives parents the opportunity to get a feel for the game at a glance. Each review provides an age range, learning rating and a content meter which rates positive messages, ease of play, violence and more. For parents who have time for more research, each of the snapshot-style reviews are expandable to show more details.

Common Sense Media also offers reviews of books, television shows, movies, and music. For more information the Common Sense Media about us page.

Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Katie Zimmermann / MCPL Customer Services

Categories: ChildrentechnologyParents


MAY 23, 2013
Dig Into Reading This Summer

It’s time to get ready to “Dig Into Reading” @MCPL this summer.  The Summer Library Program starts June 8 and ends August 24.  We have lots of fun activities, programs, therapy dogs to listen to kids read, and a summer reading club all ready to go for children and families at all MCPL locations.

Children can register for the reading club and pick up the Excavation Site Map @ any MCPL location.   For every 15 minutes children read, visit the library, attend a library program and complete a suggested activity, they cross off or color a rock.  When all 7 rocks are colored, the site map can be brought to the library and children can claim their treasure.  Children will need their maps to get their treasure.   Children can complete as many digs as they want and claim treasure for completion of each one.

Along with the reading club, we have many great performers lined-up who will be sure to delight the whole family and sneak in some learning as well. 

·         Musician/storyteller, Stuart Stotts will be presenting “Dig in and Dig It: Songs and Stories to Celebrate Reading” with songs about a magical cavern, the Underground Railroad and more.

·          The Truly Remarkable Loon will amaze us as he “Read(s) Books and Juggles Everything Else” including juggling spinning plates. 

·         Jack Zolkowski and his amazing Soda Pups Dogs will steal your heart and keep you smiling all day.  His dogs are named after soft drinks—Ginger Ale, Sierra Mist, Squirt, Dr. Pepper, and RB (Root Beer).  Sierra Mist even rides in a remote-controlled Hummer and you won’t want to miss the Green Bay Packer trick!

·         Magician Rob Halbrook is back as Professor Marvel, but this year he will be taking us on an amazing Archeological Adventure involving Merlin and the Goblet of Fire and lots more book-related magical adventures.

·         With Professor Oops we will be “Dig(ging) Into the Underground World” and exploring creatures underneath the ground as only he can present it, with lots of humor and fun.

·         David Stokes and his “Creatures Under the Earth Surface” program will help us discover creatures that hug the earth.

Discover, imagine and create @your library this summer and "Dig Into Reading".  Special Summer Library Programs are also available for teens (Beneath the Surface) and adults (Groundbreaking Reads).  For more information and schedules:


Add a comment  (0 comments) posted by Sharyn Heili, Children's Services

Categories: ChildrenSummer Reading Program


MAY 7, 2013
Wausau Story Time Changes for Summer
Summer is coming, and with it the Summer Library Program at MCPL!

The next couple of weeks the Wausau Headquarters children's department will be busy with school tours, so there will be no story times May 12th through June 9th at the Wausau Headquarters library. 

Book Babies, Tales for Tots and Preschool Story Times will continue through summer with an adjusted schedule.

Beginning June 10th, join us for Sweet Dreams Story Time.
This story time will be offered every Monday evening at 6:30 p.m. throughout the summer. Come join the summer fun!


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Categories: ChildrenSummer Reading ProgramStorytimes


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