The Rock Island Library’s “Camp iRead” summer activities and all-ages reading challenge offers more than 118 opportunities to read, learn and have fun. Options cover all age groups and include camp-themed craft kits, in-person events at libraries, movie showings, library outreach around town and chances to explore new interests. These activities are free and the camp runs from June 1 to July 31.

Full details on all the Camp iRead fun will be available at the Beyond the Beaten Path Summer Kickoff on Wednesday, June 1 from 4-6:30 p.m. at the Quad City Botanical Center, 2525 Fourth Avenue in Rock Island. “We’re so happy to partner with the Botanical Center on this free event, which brings our patrons outside to experience nature with activities and fun for all ages,” said Susan Foster, Rock Island Public Library youth services director.

Attendees can sign up for summer reading, visit the Library2Go bookmobile, pick up a free “Summer Reader” yard sign, visit the Botanical Center gardens, play oversized yard games, and enjoy free outdoor activities from the Rock Island Library, Quad City Botanical Center, and community partners, including the Rock Island Parks and Recreation Department, Metro, Nahant Marsh, Army Corps of Engineers, Illinois Extension Service, Rock Island County Soil & Water Conservation District and the Spring Forward Learning Center. Admission and all activities are free and open to anyone.

In case of light rain, activities move into the Botanical Center pavilion, but bad weather will cause the event to move to June 2. Follow the Library and Botanical Center Facebook pages for weather-related updates.

The library’s all-ages reading challenge starts June 1 at the library’s Beanstack website and mobile app. Participants can earn their very own Summer Reader patch, while supplies last, and check off digital badges for meeting pre-set reading and activity goals. Each badge earned equals a digital ticket to enter into online drawings for prize baskets. Those who earn at least 10 badges of any type may also earn special rewards, including an end-of-summer pool party for children and teens, and a RIPL camp hat for adults. These special incentives are available while supplies and capacity lasts. 

The Camp iRead Summer Reading challenge is open to anyone from anywhere but prizes must be picked up locally. To sign in and participate, follow the Reading Challenges menu link here. A printable paper form is also available.

 Want to explore new interests?  Blaze a trail to the library!

The first week of “Camp iRead” starts off with many events, including a chance to explore the woods. The library will host a Guided Nature Hike at Black Hawk State Park on Saturday, June 4 from 10-11:30 a.m. A park volunteer will lead the hike and discuss the nature and history of the site. Walkers should be prepared for uneven terrain and bring a water bottle. The hike is free and open to adults and families and registration is required. Sign up via the library calendar or call the library at 309-732-READ (7323) to sign up.

The weekly “camper crafts” are available while supplies last for ages 12 and under from May 31 to July 25. “Camp crafts to go” for teens and adults will be available from June 6 to July 25, also on a first-come, first-served basis.

Events for adults the first week of camp include the latest historical documents that library staff have scanned for convenient access. This first installment of “Treasures from the History Room” covers contagious disease reports collected by the Rock Island City Clerk from 1880 to 1908. The event takes place at 2 p.m. on June 1 in the Downtown Library Community Room. The library will also offer a free community viewing and discussion of the American Experience PBS documentary “Stonewall Uprising,” at 2 p.m. on Friday, June 3 to mark the start of Pride Month.

Library patrons of all ages can sign up for a free “Dinosaur Interactive Movie” on Monday, June 6 at 3 p.m. in the Downtown Library Community Room. Interactive movies combine a movie showing with props and cues for participant interaction. Registration is required, so sign up via the library’s website calendar or call. Some of the on-screen dinosaur mayhem may be a bit intense for very young viewers.  

For more summer fun, pick up or download the Library’s Camp iRead Summer Guide newsletter, or click here. For questions, call 309-732-READ (7323).