Summer Reading

The six week summer reading program is observed June 24-August 3, 2024. The library offers amazing family programs that are sure to keep you and your family immersed in activity throughout the summer! Please note dates and times will vary from branch to branch. We encourage you to utilize the schedule of events below as you dive into the many summer activities your library has to offer. As always, we are happy to answer any questions you may have! Contact any branch of BRL for more information.

Summer Slide:

While we continue to promote the importance of daily reading, our focus during the summer months is to have participants visit the library to experience activities and to read for pleasure. However, we realize Summer Slide, the loss of academic and literacy skills, is a possibility. Therefore, we encourage parents to visit the library weekly to check out books of interest for children. If regular library visits are not an option, we also offer a variety of ebooks, e-audio books, and more through hoopla and Overdrive. Need a library card? Register online to receive your digital library card by email.

Events by Branch:

Carrollton Branch -  14362 New Towne Haven Lane

  • Saturday, June 22 @ 10am - 1pm Kick-off Party! Registration and Bingo!
  • Thursday, June 27 @ 3pm: Adventures in the Sky!
  • Thursday, July 11 @ 3pm: Mariners' Museum Presents "Sailing Under the Stars"
  • Thursday, July 18 @ 3pm: Galaxy Slime
  • Thursday, July 25 @ 3pm: Magician Harold Wood
  • Thursday, August 1 @ 10:30am: Summer Reading Wrap-up!
  • Weekly Teen Fun: Mondays @ 3pm - June 24 and July 8, 15, 22, 29
  • Weekly Storytimes: Mondays @10:30am - June 24 and July 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29

Claremont Branch - 91 Mancha Avenue

  • Friday, June 28 @ 3pm: Kick-off! Registration and Lantern Craft
  • Friday, July 5 @ 3pm (Claremont Town Hall): Jonathan Austin's 24-Hour Emergency Juggling and Magic Show
  • Friday, July 12 @ 3pm (Claremont Town Hall): Mariners' Museum Presents "Engineering a Lighthouse"
  • Friday, July 19 @ 3pm: Surry Extension Office visits with a fun SURPRISE!
  • Friday, July 26 @ 3pm: The Singing Cowgirl Presents "Adventure!"
  • Friday, August 2 @ 3pm: Balloon Creations by Susan

Courtland Branch - 22511 Main Street

  • Tuesday, June 25 @ 10am - 12pm: SRP Kick-off! Registration and Touch-a-Truck
  • Tuesday, July 2 @ 10am - 12pm: Summer Games
  • Tuesday, July 9 @ 10am & 2pm: Jonathan Austin's 24-Hour Emergency Juggling and Magic Show
  • Tuesday, July 16 @ 10am & 2pm: Rainbow Puppets
  • Tuesday, July 23 @ 10am & 2pm: U.S. Forest Service
  • Thursday, July 25 @ 11am - 12pm: Christmas in July
  • Tuesday, July 30 @ 10am - 12pm: Old Cart Critters Petting Zoo
  • Teen and Tween Fun - Thursday, July 18 @ 3 - 5pm: Game Day

Franklin Branch - 280 N. College Drive

  • Wednesday, June 26 @ 10am & 2pm: Talewise Science Tellers
  • July 1 - July 5: Craft Week!
  • Wednesday, July 10 @ 10am & 2pm: Scott Wagoner Magic
  • Wednesday, July 17 @ 10am & 2pm: Mad Science
  • Wednesday, July 24 @ 10am & 2pm: Bright Star Touring Theatre
  • Wednesday, July 31 @ 10am & 2pm: JB Rattles Reptile Show

Smithfield Branch - 255 James Street

  • Wednesday, June 26 @ 10:30am - 1pm: Registration, Balloon Creations by Susan, and Book Characters Elephant and Piggie
  • Wednesday, July 3 @ 10:30am: Squishmallow Party!
  • Wednesday, July 10 @ 10:30am: Jonathan Austin's 24-Hour Emergency Juggling and Magic Show
  • Wednesday, July 17 @ 10:30am & 1:30pm: JB Rattles Reptile Show (seating is limited; registration req.)
  • Wednesday, July 24 @ 10:30am & 1:30pm: Youth Bingo for Prizes! 
  • Wednesday, July 31 @ 10:30am - 1pm: Summer Reading Wrap-Up with Face Painting and Book Giveaways
  • Weekly Teen Fun: Tuesdays @ 3pm - July 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30
  • Weekly Storytimes: Tuesdays @ 10:30am - July 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30

Surry Branch - 270 Colonial Trail East

  • Thursday, June 27 @ 3pm: Jonathan Austin's 24-Hour Emergency Juggling and Magic Show
  • Saturday, July 6 @ 3pm: Afternoon of water games, scavenger hunts, team activities and more!
  • Thursday, July 11 @ 3pm: A Super Duper Surprise (with outdoor fun!)
  • Thursday, July 18 @ 3pm: Balloon Creations by Susan
  • Thursday, July 25 @ 3pm: The Singing Cowgirl Presents "Adventure!"
  • Thursday, August 1 @ 3pm: The Virginia Living Museum presents "Caring for Others"

Wakefield Branch - 100 Wilson Avenue

  • Thursday, June 27 @ 10:30am: Kick-off with Mad Science
  • July 1-5: Come in anytime this week to pick up your Scavenger Hunt to complete at home.
  • Thursday, July 11 @ 10:30am:  Balloon Creations by Susan
  • Thursday, July 18 @ 10:30am: Mariners' Museum "Building a Lighthouse"
  • Thursday, July 25 @ 10:30am: The Singing Cowgirl Presents "Adventure!"
  • Thursday, August 1 @ 10:30am:  Summer Reading Wrap-up

Waverly Branch - 125 Bank Street

  • Tuesday, June 25 @ 5 - 7pm:  SRP Kick-off with the Teeny Tiny Farm and Balloon Creations by Susan
  • July 1-5: Come in anytime this week to pick up your Scavenger Hunt to complete at home
  • Tuesday, July 9 @ 2pm: Mad Science
  • Tuesday, July 16 @ 5 - 7pm: Paint Night at the Farmers Market
  • Tuesday, July 23 @ 6pm: The Singing Cowgirl Presents "Adventure!"
  • Tuesday, July 30 @ 2pm: Summer Reading Wrap-up

Windsor Branch - 18 Duke Street (programs held at the library unless otherwise noted)

  • Saturday, June 22 @ 11am: Reptile Education of Virginia
  • Tuesday, July 2 @ 11am - 1pm: Birdhouse Craft
  • Tuesday, July 9 @ 11am (Georgie Tyler Middle School): Virginia Aquarium Presents "Sea Turtles: from Egg to Adult"
  • Tuesday, July 16 @ 11am (rain location Georgie Tyler Middle School): Grab a lawn chair and join us at the library to enjoy music of the Caribbean with Ronald Emrit and his Steelpan Drums
  • Tuesday, July 23 @ 11am (Georgie Tyler Middle School): Talewise Science Presents "Adventure of the Lost Treasure"
  • Tuesday, July 30 @ 11am - 1pm: Awards Day Pizza Party and a FREE book!
  • Teen Fun: Wednesday, July 24 @ 2pm: Aspen Black Presents "Waves". Teens will have fun discovering how to record and mix a variety of instruments and vocals to create a quality home recording.

Outdoor activities to explore:


Printable list: BRL Summer bucket list


Hampton Roads Naval Museum(Norfolk, VA)
The Hampton Roads Naval Museum, located inside Nauticus, is an accredited museum operated by the United States Navy, and celebrates the 234 years history of the fleet in the Hampton Roads region of Virginia.

Isle of Wight County Museum (Smithfield, VA)
Founded in 1976, the Isle of Wight County Museum tells the story of the county through its interactive exhibits including a turn-of-the-century country store as well as displays interpreting colonial history, the Smithfield ham industry, the Blackwater River, the Civil War and the Cold War.

The Mariners’ Museum and Park (Newport News, VA)>
For over 90 years, the history of the ocean and its relationship with humankind has been told and displayed in one of  the largest maritime museums in the world.

Nauticus and the Battleship Wisconsin> (Norfolk, VA)
Nauticus, a maritime science museum, celebrates the economic, naval, and natural power of the sea. It features hands-on exhibits, wide-screen high-definition films, theaters with live actors, shark touch, and national-caliber traveling exhibits.  Nauticus is also home to the Battleship Wisconsin.

Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Museum (Portsmouth, VA)
The Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Museum and the associated Lightship Museum cover the 250+ year relationship with the shipyard – America’s oldest and largest naval shipyard located on the Portsmouth Waterfront.

Rawls Museum Arts(Courtland, VA)
Rawls Museum Arts features visiting curators, lecturers, jurors, artists, performers and educators to facilitate programs and exhibitions that are as diversified as the subjects, media, artworks, and lessons they present.

Science Museum of Virginia (Richmond, VA)
From virtual presentations featuring STEM experts to fun videos on social media, and from in-person experiential exhibitions to in-depth lab demos, the Science Museum of Virginia looks for all opportunities to encourage Virginians to enrich their lives through science.

Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center (Virginia Beach, VA)
The mission of the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is to inspire conservation of the marine environment through education, research, and sustainable practices.

Virginia Beach Surf & Rescue Museum (Virginia Beach, VA)
The Virginia Beach Surf & Rescue Museum honors and preserves the history of Virginia’s coastal communities and maritime heritage. The scope of the Museum’s exhibits begins with the Virginia Beach Community and extends to subjects related to Virginia’s oceanfront, coastal and water-related heritage.

Virginia Living Museum (Newport News, VA)
The Virginia Living Museum is an open-air museum located in Newport News, Virginia that has many living exhibits of Virginia’s indigenous species. The exhibits include aspects of an aquarium, science center, aviary, botanical preserve and planetarium.

Watermen’s Museum (Yorktown, VA)
The museum demonstrates the role Chesapeake Bay Watermen, from pre-colonial to modern times, have played in the shaping of our nation, providing historical exhibits depicting  military and civilian water craft and activities, crafts and methods of their trade.