Libraries aren't only great for learning and reading, but also for having fun. There are always activities of some sort happening. The bonus is the price: they are always free.
We’ve gone to story time at various libraries over the years, but we wanted something a bit different. We stopped in the East Aurora Library for a craft hour one Monday evening.
The librarians were nice enough to let us in, even though we didn’t register. This was a new experience because it was kids only. We have only gone to activities that included kids and their parents or caregivers. I was sure my 4-year-old would be just fine, and she was.
She went into a big, colorfully decorated room with six other kids. I sat and read for the hour, which was kind of nice. Just me. Sitting in quiet. All the while, Emma was having a blast. After 50 minutes, she came out with a big smile on her face and a beautiful craft in her hands.
The following week, we visited the Orchard Park Library. This time, I registered. It was a "Star Wars" celebration and I knew it would be busy. It was.
There were dozens of kids having a blast and enjoying the Force. It was awesome. There were characters in costume, crafts, a scavenger hunt and more. It was all free, too.
Don’t read into this the wrong way – I’m happy to pay for fun activities, but free is always a little extra fabulous.
Here’s the thing. It doesn’t really matter what your kid likes – there’s always something different at one of the dozens of area libraries from Lego and chess clubs, to art and music classes. Check the schedules at the various libraries. Here are some of the events taking place this week.
Hamburg Public Library (102 Buffalo St, Hamburg): Story time with Ms. Erin at 10:30 a.m. May 2 and May 9. The program, geared toward ages 2 to 5, includes books, crafts, rhymes and finger plays.
Lancaster Library (5466 Broadway, Lancaster): Kids (ages 5 to 12) can make a fabulous Mother’s Day craft at 4:30 p.m. May 4. Also, "Movin and Groovin" time from 11:30 a.m. to noon May 6. It's a high-energy program for kids ages 2-5 with dancing and yoga. Call to register for both: 683-1120
Eggertsville-Snyder Branch (4622 Main St., Snyder): A huge book sale from 1 to 7 p.m. May 2. You can buy a bag for $4 and fill it up with books. It's great for all ages. Get the kids excited to read. Also, Tiny Toddler Time (ages 1-2) is at 10:15 a.m. May 6. Call 839-0700 to register.
Kenmore Branch (160 Delaware Road, Kenmore): Crafter Day is the first Saturday of each month at 10 a.m. This is recommended for ages 5 to 10, but younger kids can attend with a caregiver. Registration is required at 873-2842.
Orchard Park Library (S-4570 South Buffalo St., Orchard Park): It’s Kids Gardening Day from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. May 7. Kids ages 5 to 12 can design and plant their own garden in a colander. It's a great way for kids to learn about gardening while making a special gift for mom. Call to register at 662-9851.
There are usually dozens of events at various libraries every single day. Libraries are clean, they have restrooms, computer stations, and of course, plenty of books. It’s more than just reading – it’s learning and fun. Don’t take my word for it, call your local library – or visit buffalolib.org. It’s a great opportunity for kids – toddlers to teens – to do some cool hands-on activities.