T. Falls Library kicks off summer reading programs


Thompson Falls Library is gearing up for a busy summer and is ready to meet patrons’ needs as they offer a little fun and friendly competition in the process. The Summer Reading Program has kicked off with 38 children participating so far. The theme for this year’s reading program is oceans of possibilities. “All they have to do is meet their reading goals,” said Crystal Buchanan, director of Thompson Falls Public Library. “There is no right or wrong way to meet a goal. Each week they meet their goal, they get a raffle ticket for raffle bucket prizes.” Clark Fork Valley Elks donated two Kindles for this year’s prizes, which will be drawn for on July 1. Children can still sign up by visiting the library.

Buchanan traveled to schools in Thompson Falls, Trout Creek and Noxon to talk to students about the reading program. “I got to promote the library and what we have here,” she said. “I talked to them about the library cards and how they’re free and I told them all about the Summer Reading Program. It was a lot of fun talking to the kids.”

After receiving feedback from last year, Buchanan learned the library’s older patrons wanted to also join in on some friendly competition. She introduced one of the library’s newest programs, book bingo, which kicked off June 1. If a patron gets three book genres in a row on their bingo card, they receive a raffle ticket that will be entered for prizes. “This will help get some readers out of their comfort zones by getting them to read different genres,” Buchanan said. Friends of the Library sponsored prizes for book bingo that include a gas gift card and a gift card to European Connection. Prizes for book bingo will be drawn on July 1.

Sanders County Ledger canvas prints

The library has started its own book club to connect the community of readers in the area. “There are quite a few book clubs in the area already but you have to provide your own book,” Buchanan said. “Our book club has room for eight people and the library provides the books. We call it the ‘no stress book club’ because we only read one book per quarter.” The book club meets for one hour the third Friday of every month. “We still have space for four more people,” Buchanan said. “The very first meeting will be June 17 at 4 p.m. here at the library. If someone is interested in joining after that one, it would be easy to get them caught up in time for the next meeting.”

After the club finishes their book for the quarter, those books will then go into a kit for other book clubs in the area to rent and use. Buchanan will also make the kits available to the schools should students want to use them for class projects.

Story time and kid’s crafts are finally starting up after a long hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Kids crafts events can be found on Facebook and an RSVP will be required in order to ensure enough supplies can be provided.

This year serves as the first for the new seed library. “The seeds were donated by a variety of sources and we have a little bit of everything,” Buchanan said. From a vast selection of vegetables, herbs and pollinator friendly flowers, patrons can take home 10 free seed sample packets. “This program is completely free and it allows people to learn about something new,” Buchanan said. “This is also a rural county and the seed library will help support the community’s food sustainability. Plus, it’s self-care. Being in the garden is self-care. If you can’t read a book, you can go dig in the dirt.”

Head to the library to check out the new classics book section, STEM kits-to-go and the upcoming book sale during the Sanders County yard sale event June 23, 24 and 25. “We’re just trying to grow each section of the library slowly,” Buchan said. “I always refer back to what the community would like to see. We want to keep kids interested and help support the homeschool families too.”


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