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Brad Hruska


Every year the Columbus Public Library (CPL) hosts an exciting summer reading program for area youth, and 2018 was no exception. “Libraries Rock!” attracted 679 participants (please keep in mind that this number does not reflect the 105 students who signed up for the teen program, the nearly 126 individuals involved with the Platte County Bookmobile, nor does it take into account the 307 participants of the adult program).

To kick off this year’s festivities, award-winning magician Jeff Quinn performed before a packed house on Thursday, June 7. Quinn did a fantastic job incorporating magic, literacy, and a love of libraries into his show.

The program then went full-steam ahead, providing children of all ages with engaging activities throughout the months of June and July.

On Mondays, families were invited to gather in CPL’s auditorium to view animated films like “Sing”, “An American Tail," “Leap!” “Rock Dog," “Frozen," “Cats Don’t Dance” and “Coco.” Participants, who came with their pillows and blankets in tow, also enjoyed a tasty snack along with the day’s movie selection.

A wide range of activities and presentations took place around Columbus on Tuesdays. Those programs included professional talents like Fax Gilbert, Michael Fitzsimmons, Rock’n Red, and Matt Parlane; as well as gifted staff from the Edgerton Explorit Center and Wildlife Encounters.

The Columbus Public Library’s tween program, entitled “CPL Roadies”, took place most Wednesdays and provided those students that just completed the third through fifth grades with an opportunity to learn about concepts dealing with sound waves and vibrations. This program was due to an amazing partnership between the Columbus Public Library and the Platte County 4H.

Eight local-celebrity readers (Riley Scott, Laurie Jansen, Ann Peterson, Sandie Fischer, Zonna Betz, Cheryl Ferguson, Jenn Osten, and Jenny Meyer) shared over 90 amusing books with children during Thursday’s two-session story times.

To conclude this year’s summer reading program, a pool party was hosted at the Pawnee Plunge on Friday, July 27. Families splashed around from 10-11:30 a.m. and then enjoyed a delicious hotdog luncheon served up by the Friends of the Columbus Public Library.

The “Libraries Rock!” program could not have been the success it was without the contributions from community organizations like the Friends of the Columbus Public Library, the Pawnee Plunge, the Platte County 4-H, Pizza Ranch, Applebee’s, McDonald’s, and hardworking volunteers like Miss Samantha Diedrichsen, whose time and efforts helped keep area youth reading during the summer months.


Monday Night Book Adventures is scheduled this month for 6:30-7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 8 and 22.

The next Super Sensational Saturdays event, “Halloween Boo-Bash,” will take place from 10 a.m. to noon on Oct. 27.

DBA Trick-or-Treat runs from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 25 at Frankfort Square.

Story Time/ART takes place from 10:30 a.m. to noon and 1:30 to 3 p.m. every Thursday.

Don’t forget that the Columbus Public Library’s Children’s Department offers a monthly calendar highlighting the many events that take place in the library’s Children’s Room. To have this informative agenda sent to your inbox, email me at

Brad Hruska is the children's librarian at the Columbus Public Library.

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