nobody's freaking out...yet

Prairie Dawn and I have been hard at work this week, planning Summer Reading 2014.
Schedules: We've decided to keep our schedule similar to last year, adding a few more programs, some of which are passive, which will definitely help us out--we're doing over 70 programs in 6 weeks...something we're both proud of and terrified of.

Don't panic--it's just a's just a schedule
and there are throngs of children thrown
into the mix!!
Speaking of scheduling, I was trying not to freak out earlier when I got vacation requests for folks during two of the craziest weeks of Summer philosophy is always, "we'll make it work." And we will...I may just be at the desk A LOT those two weeks. 

Prizes: we ordered our prizes on Amazon. From babies to adults, every time a goal is met, or every time a program is attended folks get a ticket; drawings for prizes happen at the end of the SR program and ONLY people who've finished Summer Reading can win. We solicit prizes like money (which we put toward buying prizes) and gift certificates from local businesses. Competition is fierce--the most envied prize for the Teens last year was a Kindle Fire.

Later this week we'll be purchasing stuff for our treasure chest: little doo-daddles that the kids can take when they hit certain goals...because not everyone can win a big prize, we want the kids to walk away with something fun. 

Donation letters went out this week, some businesses will be getting calls tomorrow; two grants have already been awarded to us which will cover the cost of our summer entertainment: we have 3 "big" entertainers coming for the kids; 3 "big" entertainers coming for the Adults, (*big means expensive) and a few free speakers.

Entertainment: Has been booked since December/January--contact them early and not only do you get first dibs on dates, but I learned from some entertainers this year that an early booking sometimes gets you cheaper rates!

Give-aways: Last year everyone received something for signing up: bubbles for the babies, pencils and bookmarks for the kids, mustache tattoos for the teens, chocolate for the grown-ups. This year we're simplifying and keeping out a big bowl of mini-chocolates and a cup of pencils for folks; cut down on cost and extra junk.

The wrap-up that becomes the get-ahead: in July last year after things were over, Prairie Dawn and I sat down and came up with a "Things we learned this summer" list, we'll be re-reading that list over the next week, remembering things that did and didn't work well and plan accordingly.

So, we've been busy. Really busy. It can be a little frustrating at times doing all this planning knowing that only the 2 of you will also be executing everything, but we're deep breathing and not freaking out. 

We might look like this come the last Friday of Summer Reading.


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