By SUSAN WALSH
The Friends of the Merced County Library partnered with the Merced County Library and the Merced City School District (MCSD) recently to help third graders from all MCSD elementary schools obtain library cards.
This is the second year these partners have worked together to make the amazing resources of the Merced County Library more available to third graders through the use of a personal library card.
This project is an ongoing priority for the Friends of the Merced County Library. Dr. Susan Flinspach and Michele Smith took the lead for the Friends and collaborated with Children’s Librarian Yeng Xiong of the Merced County Library and Dr. Audry Garza of MCSD.
They worked with third grade teachers across the 15 schools in MCSD. Teachers undertook the key activities of introducing the importance of library cards and working with families to complete the applications.
Friends of the Merced County Library collected the applications on Sept. 27 and delivered them to the Merced Library. On Oct. 24, the Friends took the library cards back to the schools for distribution to third graders.
A Spooktacular Halloween Celebration for the new library card holders, their families, and the community was held at the Merced County Library staffed by library personnel, MCSD personnel, and volunteers from the Friends. Those who came to celebrate enjoyed games, crafts, prizes and trick-or-treating, as well as the opportunity to use their new library cards to check out books and materials.
The results of the library card drive and the celebration were astounding:
- 503 new library cards were issued.
- 600+ visitors came to the library on Wednesday night.
- 170 families visited the Friends of the Merced County Library station during the celebration.
- 200+ books were given away by the Friends to children.