Summer Reading Clubs are Launching Now at Columbus and Central Ohio Libraries!

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Summer Reading Clubs can keep kids entertained and motivated over the summer! Check out this list of Columbus and Central Ohio Summer Reading Programs hosted by local libraries!

As an adult winner of a Summer Reading Challenge prize a few years ago, I can personally say that these Summer Reading Programs are for all ages! And what else do we have to do during the Summer of 2020 than to read?!

Check out one (or more) of these Central Ohio Summer Reading Programs to keep your kids focused on the goal! There are prizes involved and some of them are pretty cool! 

library books on the shelf at a Columbus Library

Columbus Metropolitan Library

Theme: Summer Reading Challenge
Dates: May 30 – August 4, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Log in to the website or download the new Reading Challenge App. Enter your reading minutes on to your Game Board and compete your Reading Activity Bingo in order to be entered into raffles for prizes like gift cards, free food, books, a bike and more!

A sign that says Ready for Kindergarten at a columbus metropolitan library

Worthington Libraries

Theme: Magic Unbound: A Summer Reading Quest
Dates: May 20 – July 20, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Receive prizes by filling in the amount of time you’ve read on your Reading Record. You can also DIY activities at home to make progress toward your prizes. You can print your Reading Record from the library website.

Westerville Public Library

Theme: Read & Imagine
Dates: May 22 – August 2, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Set your own reading goal and once you reach your goal, stop by the library to pick up your prize!

library books on a shelf

Grandview Heights Public Library

Theme: Summer Reading Club
Dates: June 1 – August 1, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Use the App to track your reading online and win prizes from the library!

grove city library

Southwest Public Libraries

Theme: Imagine Your Story
Dates: May 30 – July 25, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Register online to read, watch online programs and do online activities in order to earn raffle entries and prizes! The program includes special online performances!

Bexley Public Library

Theme: Imagine Your Story
Dates: June 1
Ages: All ages
How it works: Track your reading online or by printing out a paper version. Highlights include virtual programming, a coloring page to hang in your window, a bookmark contest and more! 

Upper Arlington Public Library

Theme: Imagine Your Story
Dates: June 1 – July 31, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Register online and download the reading log and mark each day you read. If you read for 15 days or more, you earn a free book! 

Delaware County District Library

Theme: Imagine Your Story
Dates: June 1 – August 21, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Read for 12 hours throughout the summer and collect prizes at the 6 and 12 hour benchmarks. Download the reading log to keep track of your reading. Most programs and events will be virtual. 

Pickerington Public Library 

Theme: Imagine Your Story
Dates: June 8 – August 8, 2020
Ages: All ages
How it works: Track your reading on the READsquared app and earn toys, coupons and raffle tickets for grand prizes! There is also a technology-free option! You can register for an one on one zoom story time with a library staff person and there will also be live zoom events throughout the summer! 

I will continue to add more as they are announced! In the meantime if you’re missing library story times, check out this list of  17 Columbus Based Virtual Story Times for Kids!


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Summer Reading Programs in Columbus Ohio

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17 Columbus Based Virtual Story Times for Kids

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When you can’t go to the library for a traditional story time, watch one of these virtual story times for kids provided by Columbus area businesses and libraries!

This post may contain affiliate links. See my disclosure

With library programs on pause, we miss our local story times! If your voice is getting hoarse from reading the same book over and over to your kids, let one of these local businesses and libraries take over for a little bit! This list includes options for babies, toddlers, preschoolers and elementary aged kids!

So many local organizations (and of course Columbus area libraries) have been providing online story times for kids over the past few months! I’ve compiled an example for each and also a link to where you can find more stories from each organization! 

Virtual Story Times for Kids from Columbus Libraries and Other Local Organizations: 

I’m going to start out this list with our traditional library story times and then end it with story times that are being offered by other local organizations that are not libraries!

1. Columbus Metropolitan Library

Virtual story times from Columbus Metropolitan Library can be found on their YouTube Channel and the story featured below is The Widemouthed Frog, a cute pop up book!

2. Grandview Heights Public Library

Online story times from Grandview Library can be found on their YouTube page! The Story below features the book Go Away, Big Green Monster!


3. Worthington Libraries

Worthington Libraries has a whole list of online story times available on their YouTube Page. The story below is one of the beloved Elephant and Piggie Books: Should I Share My Ice Cream?


4. Bexley Library

Bexley Library has rhymes, stories and other activities on their YouTube page. The story below is for elementary ages: I am Jane Goodall.


5. Southwest Public Libraries

Southwest Public Libraries is offering stories and songs on their YouTube Channel. The story below is the colorful book Elmer.


6. Upper Arlington Public Library

The UA Public Library has a collection of videos for kids including story times songs and crafts. The video below features Have You Seen Elephant? by David Barrow.

Visit their YouTube page for more story times!

7. Delaware County District Library

The Delaware County District Library has family friendly videos on their Facebook page including craft time, story times, a kids cookbook club and crafts. The video below features the book Not Quite Snow White.


8. Westerville Public Library

Westerville Public Library has family storytimes, baby story times, toddler story times, and more on their YouTube page! There are stories, songs, activities and more!


9. The Underground Railroad Museum

The Underground Railroad Museum in Flushing, Ohio is doing a weekly story time. This one features the book Frederick Douglass.


10. Paulette’s Princess Parties

Paulette’s Princess Parties has done several online story times featuring various princesses and super heroes! On their Facebook page, you can view the story times, dances, songs and more!


11. CATCO is Kids

CATCO is Kids offers CATCO is Storytime, Playwriting lessons and artist spotlights! The video below features the classic Dr. Seuss book, Green Eggs and Ham!


12. Spanish for Niños

Spanish for Ninos has an online story time available in Spanish! They are also offering online Spanish classes! This story time video features the book Hormigas En Mis Pantalones / Ants in My Pants!

Visit their Facebook page for more videos!


13. Columbus Police Department

The Columbus Police Department offers Books and Badges via Facebook video! In the video below, the officer reads from Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein and has a visit from his dog!


14. Little Bottoms Free Store

Little Bottoms Free Store has been providing story times via Facebook Live. This video features the book How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food?.


15. The Shazzbots!

Captain Captain from The Shazzbots! has been doing daily songs and stories via Facebook Live! If you visit their Facebook page, there are months worth of videos to watch! 


16. Piccadilly Play Cafe

Piccadilly Play Cafe has a YouTube channel with stories and online art camp classes. Below, a staff member reads the book The Big Hungry Bear!

17. Storytime at Grange Insurance Audubon Center

Grange Insurance Audubon Center has several online videos that feature story times, singalongs, science experiments and more! The video below features the book Say Hello Like This!.


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online story times for kids a stack of books and an iPad

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How to Access Books, Magazines, Movies and More for Free Online with Your Central Ohio Library Card

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Columbus and Central Ohio Library systems offer so many free online resources to their users inducing eBooks, eAudiobooks, movies, music, language lessons and more!

Using your Columbus (or other local) library card, you can access so many free resources! Whether it’s movies to watch, lessons to learn or animated picture books, families can go online to access these resources through their library’s website. 

Read through the following library locations and visit their websites to see what resources are available to card holders!

Columbus Metropolitan Library

It’s possible to access over 125,000 eBooks and eAudiobooks for free with your library card! Digital movies, music, magazines and more are also available for free with your library card!

The method you use them will differ depending on your device, but you can visit the library’s website to determine which method works for your phone or tablet! This is available for Android, Kindle, Apple iOS, Windows OS and Nook!

Some eBooks and eAudiobooks and movies are available immediately and some have limited availability.

Columbus Library also offers over 75 online research tools including which offers you access to courses where you can learn tons of new skills!

Other research tools include Mango Languages, AtoZ World Culture, Scholastic BookFlix, Creativebug, Kids InfoBits and so many more!

Worthington Libraries

With your Worthington Libraries card you can access 23 digital media databases including American Music featuring online access to thousands of albums, eBooks, Digital Downloads for Kids and Teens, Flipster (featuring magazines), audiobooks and more! 

You can apply for a Worthington Library Card online and all residents of Ohio are eligible to apply for a free library card.

Bexley Public Library

With your Bexley Public Library card you can access eBooks and Audio eBooks, magazines and newspapers, movies and music! As with other libraries, the method of accessing this digital content varies but includes hoopla, libby and others.

Through the BPL you can also access and ivy league level courses through The Great Courses.

Grandview Heights Public Library

With your Grandview Heights Public Library card you can instantly access digital audiobooks, download eBooks and eAudiobooks, music, movies, TV, magazines, newspapers, Scholastic Go for kids and teachers, BookFlix for kids,, Mango languages and more!

A library card is required to create a username and password for most if not all access to their digital collections. Any resident of the state of Ohio can register for a free card.

Westerville Public Library

With your library card you can access hoopla, freegal (music), Mango Languages, eBooks, audiobooks, magazines and newspapers! Ebooks are available for all major devices including Nook, Kindle, Android and Apple iOS.

A unique thing available through the Westerville History Center is self-guided online tours of the city! You can use an app or watch on the website. You can choose a tour of State Street, Main Street, College Avenue or Uptown Industry. This online tour includes pictures and an audio recording of the history of what you are seeing!

Delaware County District Library

Your Delaware library card will give you access to the Ohio Digital Library which provides eBooks, eAudiobooks, music and videos using the Libby app. You can also access Hoopla featuring movies, music, TV, eAudiobooks and eBooks and more! Delaware Library patrons can have six borrows per month.

You can also access Kanopy and Kanopy Kids for educational films, movies, documentaries, indie films and more!

Delaware County District Library card also offers LinkedIn Learning with, Creativebug, and Niche Academy.

Southwest Public Libraries

With your Southwest Public Library card you can access OverDrive, Flipster, hoopla, TubleBooks (featuring animated picture books for kids) and RBDigital. Through these services you can stream movies, TV shows, read eBooks and listen to eAudiobooks, read magazines and more!

On the DIY portion of the Library’s website you can also access creative workshops, the Hobbies and Crafts Resource Center where there are “how-to” tutorials! There is even a Home Improvement Reference Center with content focused on home repair projects! is also available as well as Transparent Language Online and the Chilton car repair manual.

Southwest Public Libraries’ website also offers online genealogy and history resources and an online archive of historical photos


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