The circus has come to town. It’s all there--the big tent, the popcorn machine, the balancing bear on the high wire and the fortune teller (go ahead, pick a fortune)—and you can catch it all for free at the
The Avon Lake Public Library is going all out this year, and although the “Under the Big Top” summer reading program started out in the children’s section, visitors of all ages have been enjoying the theme, which stretches through the library.
“Every year the state chooses a theme, but we went on our own this year with a circus theme,” Paula Shadle, the children’s services manager said.
Although the library used the circus theme about a decade ago, it was a first for Shadle, who helped with the elaborate display, including an 18-foot high tent façade that adorns the entranceway to the children’s department.
“It took 80 yards of fabric,” Shadle, who made the tent opening, said. It took the help of four library employees to erect it.
Shadle said employees brainstormed all year before starting to create the physical pieces in April. Most children’s programs for the next month were put on hold while the library readies for the summer reading program.
“We recycled and reused as much as possible,” she said.
Shadle, who sews, created some of the linen items. Other employees used paintable Styrofoam to make other items.
“The whole rest of the library bought into it,” Shadle said.
The reference desk has been decorated to look like a midway and the theme carries to the front check out counter and into DiscoveryWorks. The glass display case near the door boasts a nice collection of circus-related items as well.
There, bright streamers were added as were some scientifically balanced circus animals on a high wire above the children’s tables.
The display is all part of the summer reading program.
“We can accept 950 kids until the 19th of July,” Shadle said.
The program, which runs through July 28, includes story times, family story times, evening family story times and culminates with the Circus Fun Fair on July 28 on the library’s grounds.
The library accepts in-person and phone registration for some items, such as Create-a-Craft Days. Contact 440-933-8128 ext. 253 for more information.