Libraries offer prizes for summer reading

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Jorie Parr

No longer just for kids, Coachella Valley libraries are hosting contests and awarding prizes to winners who complete their adult reading programs.

Readers read, no matter what the weather. But when sweltering summer heat keeps us year-round desert dwellers indoors, books help us cope. As if we weren’t motivated on our own, Coachella Valley libraries offer prize incentives. And not just for the kiddies, some have adult reading programs.

At Palm Springs Public Library, they’re playing bingo — with the prospect of the grand final prize of an Xbox Kinect console, no less.  Participating adults fill a square on a bingo sheet each time they read a book of a specified genre. They also get credit for attending special programs — like the Tuesday afternoon movie musicals and Wednesday evening lectures.

Every week there’s the possibility of winning a goody bag filled with items like music-related games, autographed books and gift certificates for local restaurants and businesses.

At Rancho Mirage Public Library, adult registration begins June 24 for its eight-week program. You sign up to peruse one book per week, keeping track in a log. You can read it or listen to it.

 “Books on CDs are very popular with adults,“ Susan Cook, principal librarian says. Completing the assignment at the end of summer, actually mid-August, gets you a free book with a free bookmark.

 “Don’t stop readin” sets the theme at the La Quinta Branch Library. To earn entries for the grand prize and monthly drawings, you write book reviews, as many as you like. They don’t have to be long.

But to receive a La Quinta tumbler (insulated cup) or a book bag, you need to go for the reading challenge. La Quinta specifies 10 categories of tomes, from sci fi to classic. Choose titles from five of these groups to read and you’re on your way. Also, attending the Saturday afternoon programs earns additional grand prize tickets. For a start, the June 20 event at 12:30 p.m. features “Art, Music & Mocktails.”

At Palm Desert Branch Library, it’s all about books into movies. You get raffle cards by addressing five books that should be made into a film. Pick one of these and cast the actors yourself. Then select five books that already have been made into a good movie. And finally five of the books made into the worst flicks. Several tote bags will be given out. Major rewards will include a Barnes & Noble gift certificate.