Over the years I’ve spent an awful lot of my free time in a library. It was always one of the first things I looked up when I moved to a new city. Yet, none of them have ever quite captured the feeling of my ‘home’ library which happens to be the Beverly Branch of the Washington County Public Libraries.

As a child, my parents often took me to the library. I was a ravenous reader and I loved learning new things. Since I was there so often I got to know the staff of the Beverly Library well. Over the years of summer reading and after school programs, the Beverly Branch was always a wonderful place to walk into. You’re always greeted with smiles and the newest selection of books. No other library has ever come close to the feeling of nostalgia and familiarity as that one has to me.

It’s nice to see that some things never change. Many of the familiar faces still work at the library and they still have wonderful programs for the community. One program this summer really caught my eye and I’m pretty sad that I’ll be at work instead of attending.

Once I saw the event on Facebook I reached out to Susan, who is the branch manager and here’s what she had to say about the event.

On July 5th at 1 p.m., the Beverly Library will be hosting a program on Foxes in Folklore at the Waterford Township Community Building in Beverly, Ohio.  This event is a part of our Summer Reading program. Foxes in Folklore will be presented by Ironwood Wolves of Galloway, Ohio.

Rachel Lauren and Matt Emmelhainz, the founders of Ironwood Wolves, have dedicated their lives to educating the public about the misunderstood canids, wolves and foxes.

“The Foxes in Folklore program is ideal for us here at the Library.  Foxes are often featured in art, fairy tales and stories:  The Gingerbread Man, Fox in Sox, The Adventures of Pinocchio, Fox and the Hound, the Sly Fox, etc.  And the fables, myths, stories have come from many countries and cultures over the years.  Cunning, wily, sly, sometimes charming but sometimes cruel, the fox hasn’t got much love in the story/fable world,” Susan Chipps, Branch Manager, said.

The Program will discuss different tales and also cover basic facts on red foxes, the most recognized fox species.  For example, “Did you know that the scientific name for Red Fox is Vulpes vulpes?  And, “Did you know that Red Foxes are not always red?

“Rachel and Matt will bring along one of their ambassador foxes for the children to see.  Which fox will they bring?  Could it be Vincent, the “cross phased” red fox?  Or maybe Ena, the red color red fox?  Would they surprise us and bring Oblio (Obi), the melanistic (black) red fox?

Our Foxes in Folklore program is open to children of all ages, but we request they have adult supervision,” Susan said.

If you can’t make this event, the library is hosting other summer programs as well.

“This summer the staff of the Beverly Library are getting out of their comfort zones.  This summer, the summer reading is “Libraries Rock!”  It should be all about music, so we are going to get loud,” Susan said.

The library is hosting a Listening Party on July 7.  They asked people what song/artist most teens need to know and made a playlist from the answers.  There will also be adult coloring pages available for a relaxing event.

“We have also brought in Russ Gorgon, the Musical Musician.  He will perform on July 9 at 10:30 at the Waterford Township Community Center,” Susan said.

July is full of musical options including a musical craft hour at 1 p.m. on July 12, a movie sing-a-long on July 14 and Tuesday musically themed movie matinees at 1 p.m.

Little ones will find fun in the Read-To-Me Story Time as they take a musical trip around the world. On Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. and Wednesdays at 11 a.m., accompanied children aged 2-6 can listen to stories and music from around the globe, fill their Musical Passports with exotic stamps, have a snack and create a musical instrument to practice at home.

However, a summer wouldn’t be complete without a reading challenge with a fun gift bag at the end. The library challenges every age group to spend more time reading throughout our hotter months. There is the Baby Read-To-Me (aged 0-2) and the Pre-Reader Read-To-Me (aged 2-6) where someone needs to read five books to them.  Readers (aged 5-11) need to read 10 age appropriate books.  The older readers (aged 11-18) need to read 10 hours.  The adults (18+) need to read 20 hours.  These need recorded, completed and turned in to the Library by July 14.  Gift bags can then be picked up July 18-26.

Finally, for those looking for a creative outlet, the library has you covered there, too. Pleasing Palettes Painting Parties will be having a painting party at the Beverly Library on July 24 at 6 p.m.  It’s $10 per person and pre-registration is required. On Wednesdays at 6 p.m. there will be rock painting.  Everything will be provided, just bring your creativity.

The library is a place in the community people often forget. From books to CDs and even audio books you’re sure to find something. There are so many wonderful programs going on this summer (and all year long) that you can check out in your local library. To quote Arthur from PBS, “Having fun isn’t hard, when you have a library card!”