Delaware Libraries Launch 2018 Statewide Summer Library Challenge

Delaware’s First Lady Tracey Quillen Carney will kick off the statewide 2018 Summer Library Challenge, Libraries Rock, this week at public libraries in all three counties. She will be joined by special guests Turtle Dance Music, an autism/sensory-friendly performance group.

The kick-off events are:

“Promoting early literacy and school readiness is a critical part of giving all of Delaware’s children a ‘first chance’ to succeed,” said First Lady Tracey Quillen Carney. “The library habit is about literacy, as well as parent-child engagement and access to other services that support strong and healthy families. To support our families and a First Chance for all of our children, I encourage every Delawarean to get and use a Delaware library card.”

Delaware libraries are noted for hosting the longest running statewide public library summer reading program in the nation.  Now in its 39th year, the annual Summer Library Challenge provides early literacy programs to help children build and develop reading and language skills; teen programs that motivate teens to read and discuss literature; and programs that encourage adults to experience the joy of reading.

“Librarians help to generate a passion for reading and learning,” said Governor John Carney. “A healthy reading habit motivates, inspires, encourages creativity and prevents the summer slide.”

“For more than 39 years — for generations of Delawareans — Delaware libraries have been cultivating reading and learning passions,” said State Librarian, Dr. Annie Norman. “Whatever your interest, whatever your talent, the library supports it.”

Young “pre-readers” (children who can’t read yet) can get credit for books that are read to them.  Throughout the summer, libraries provide a variety of fun and educational arts, cultural, and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) programs to encourage reading and spark curiosity.

Registration for the Summer Library Challenge is free in-person at all public libraries or online. Incentive prizes are awarded based on reading and activity milestones.  Delaware libraries encourage Delawareans of all ages to track their reading and learning during the summer and throughout life.  A variety of tips, tools, and techniques for tracking individual interests are available on the Unleash Inner Genius guide.

The following programs for children will be presented at all public libraries throughout the state; visit the Summer Library Challenge guide for the schedule of events and additional information:

  • Rock the Mic: Hip-Hop & Literacy with musician Baba Bomani, in partnership with the Delaware Division of the Arts.
  • Unexpected Heroes: India Tales presented by New Moon Theater, in partnership with the Delaware Division of the Arts.
  • Science Rocks! learn how sounds are made and how we hear them with the Delaware Aerospace Education Foundation.
  • Libraries Rock discover the fascinating world of rocks with the Delaware Nature Society

Summer arts programs are supported by the Delaware Division of Libraries and, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. The Division of Arts promotes Delaware arts events on

Turtle Dance Music furthers early childhood development, autism awareness, music education, STEM, and arts integration through incredible and fun sensory-friendly shows. These performances are supported by Autism Delaware, the Delaware Division of the Arts, and the Delaware Division of Libraries.

Autism Delaware’s mission is to help people and families affected by autism. Their vision is that all people with autism have opportunities to learn, grow and live full lives as included and valued members of their communities.

The Delaware Division of Libraries, a state agency dedicated to unleashing the potential in all Delawareans in partnership with Delaware Libraries, offers free access to the online catalog (; Wi-Fi; computers/internet; eBooks; programs/workshops; community partnerships; and more.