November 27, 2017-Massachusetts Libraries were incredibly active during the summer of 2017. A record high of 462,749 people attended programs held in 293 participating libraries across the Commonwealth. These public libraries offered over 18,000 programs for all ages during the summer months; an increase of approximately 1,400 programs from 2016. In 2017, 119,154 participants of all ages registered for Summer Library Programs, with 34,229 using Wandoo Reader, the statewide online tool offering registration and tracking reading from anywhere with Internet access.

2017 was our seventh year as members of the Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP), allowing MA libraries to share the same program, theme, incentives, and artwork with many other states across the nation. The Massachusetts Library System (MLS) continues to provide membership to the CSLP for each public library member along with the program manual, posters, and bookmarks.

Participating libraries really enjoyed the 2017 theme of “Build A Better World” finding it flexible and appealing to many age ranges from construction for young children to social awareness for teens and adults. They loved the colorful, playful artwork especially all-ages materials they could use to engage the whole family. Libraries across Massachusetts also showed appreciation for the bookmarks, posters, and manuals they received as part of the statewide Summer Library Program. As one librarian stated, “It was my first year working in a Massachusetts library this summer. I love the support and the cooperation that I have experienced! I appreciated how easily this year’s theme could be used in a variety of different ways.”

MLS also continued working with the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) to bring the much loved and appreciated Boston Bruins Partnership to libraries. The Bruins visited 11 libraries for special events with Blades the Bear and the Bruins Promo Team. Additionally, thanks to the Bruins support, poster costs were covered for all programs for all libraries, and participants had the opportunity to win prizes provided by the Boston Bruins. The Western MA Library Advocates (WMLA) once again coordinated the donations of incentives from the Big E, Yankee Candle, USS Constitution and Friendly’s Restaurants. Librarians statewide report the high value of these incentives and partnerships.

MLS and Massachusetts libraries are already planning for summer 2018, inspired by the theme of “Libraries Rock!”, and will continue our tradition of offering a quality, educational, and fun program for all ages available at your public library.

For more information, contact:

April Mazza
MLS Consultant

Christi Showman Farrar
MLS Consultant