Landrum Wanderings: Not your grandmother’s library!

Published 5:32 pm Monday, June 12, 2017

Landrum Library offers summer reading challenges, rewards

I was at the Landrum library checking out an M.C. Beaton “Agatha Raisin” mystery, my nighttime “go to” reading for bouts of insomnia. Librarian Anna Pilston checked my books out and asked if I would like to sign up for the summer Adult Reading Program.

“Summer Adult Reading?” I asked. “I thought summer reading programs were always for kids out of school on vacation.” Anna tells me they have offered an adult program for several years now. Anna began as a volunteer at the library and has been a librarian there for two years.

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I asked her to tell me about the program and it sounds like fun. The packet of information includes a list of library events for summer 2017, a bumper sticker showing an Ace, Heart, Diamond, and Club, so you can announce to the world that you’re a summer reader. Most important, you receive four cards, an Ace, Queen, Jack and a King. Each card has a challenge. If you complete the challenge, you win the prize listed on that card.

Let’s read the Ace card. Here’s the challenge:

Come to a library program; read/listen to a book published in 2017; read/listen to a book that has won an award; read/listen to a book of your choice. And the prize for completing these tasks? An insulated tote bag.

Next comes the challenge on the Jack:

Read a graphic novel; check out an item from Overdrive (I’ll explain about Overdrive later); read/listen to a book of your choice. And the prize for completing the Jack Challenge is a deck of cards.

Now for the Queen challenge:

Check out an item from the library’s Local Music Collection; read/listen to a book of your choice; stream an item on Freegal. (Again, I’ll explain Freegal below). Complete these three things and receive some earbuds.

Last but not least is the King challenge:

Read/listen to a nonfiction book; read/listen to a historical novel; check out a magazine from Zinio (see below for explanation); read/listen to a book of your choice. Sunglasses are yours for finishing the King’s challenge.

If you need assistance finding books that have won awards, historical novels, a graphic novel, or books published in 2017, a librarian can help you. Complete all four challenges and you will be entered in a grand prize drawing. Here’s an extra bonus. Complete just one card and turn it in. You’ll receive a $10 credit towards late fees.

Entering the Summer Adult Reading Program not only encourages you to spend time with books during these sultry, sunny days, but also exposes you to other resources, like Overdrive, Zinio, and Freegal, available through the Spartanburg Library System.

Start by getting a pin number to go along with your library card. If you had a pin number and have forgotten it, the library can reassign a new number when you stop in to pick up your summer reading materials. 

Next, check out the website Click on “Resources” and you will see the following headings: Overdrive, Zinio, Freegal.

You can download ebooks or listen to audiobooks on Overdrive. There’s a picture next to each title showing a book or headphones depicting the format it’s available in. Zinio is the place to find online magazines. Just create an account to log in and you will have access to current and back issues of your favorite magazines.

Freegal allows you to stream your favorite music. Use your card number and pin to log in. Then enter the music or musician you want to listen to. Who knew the library provided all these resources? I’ve been living in the dark ages when libraries were only about books! “This is not your grandmother’s library!”

Check out the list of activities happening this summer at the Landrum Library.  Tonight, June 13, 6 p.m., is an exciting offering. Author Lisa Wingate will be visiting for a discussion and book signing for her latest book, “Before We Were Yours.” The library can accommodate 100 patrons and books will be available for sale.

June 23, 4 p.m. will be a movie showing, “Arsenic and Old Lace.” Moviegoers are invited to bring snacks to enjoy during the movie. Put June 29, 6:30 p.m. on the calendar and plan to bring lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy a patriotic concert with the Sparkle City Brass Band.

July 7, 4 p.m. is another old movie night, “Top Hat.” July 18 at 6 p.m. learn about salamanders with Tim Lee. Another classic movie, “42nd Street,” will be shown on July 21 at 4 p.m. And don’t forget ongoing through the summer is Monday Night Yoga at 6:30 p.m.

I ask Anna about some of the workings of the library, such as requesting a book that’s not on the shelf in Landrum.

“You can request any book that is available through the Spartanburg system. If it’s on the shelf in another branch, the courier will have it here within one or two days,” she explains. “The courier arrives here every day except Saturday. And if you have a book that you took out in one branch, but happen to be in another town, you can return it to any library in the Spartanburg County system.”

As I leave the library and head to my car, the van pulls up and starts unloading crates of books.

Stop by the Landrum Library, pick up your cards and join the reading program.

Our local branch of the Spartanburg Library System is there to help you read, learn, and have fun. Check out the summer activities including crafts and parties available for different age groups, toddlers through tweens and teenagers. And if you’re looking for some light, mystery reading, check out “Agatha Raisin,” it’s  a “page-turner” series.