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Friday, July 1, 2011

Fun on the Fourth of July (and beyond!)

image_thumb3_thumb_thumbThe library will be closed Sunday July 3rd (and all summer Sundays) and Monday July 4th in observance of Independence Day.

Children and Teens -- Registration for Summer Reading Clubs Continues. Register by July 2nd to be entered in a prize drawing for a boogie board!

Kids keep track the time they spend reading or listening to books (yes, pre-schoolers are most welcome as are audiobook listeners!)  Teens keep track of the books they read.  All summer long, we’ll have lots of programs, games, and prizes so stop by the library to get a schedule or look at our online calendar and check us out!

Adults, we have a Summer Reading Club for you too – show your kids that reading is for everyone -- and you can win prizes too! (Details at in the adult department.)

Don’t have time to come to the library? Check out our online reading clubs –  click on the “Book Clubs Online” link in our “useful links for families” section.

Another way to win! New Jersey State libraries from across the state have partnered with the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority to encourage readers to "Read Like a Library Champion." Just log in the books you read at www.njlibrarychampions.org. Twenty-five lucky readers will win a family four-pack of tickets to attend the WIGGLES BIG BIRTHDAY BASH on Sunday, July 17. Deadline for entry is Wednesday, July 6. Discount tickets for select IZOD Center family shows are also available through www.IZODcenter.com, through Ticketmaster by using the code LIBRARY.

@ The Library: Upcoming Programs:

Summer Reading Club Kick-Off 'THE GIZMO GUYS!' (Suggested for ages 3 - 12) Saturday July 2, 2011 10:30 to 11:15 AM No Registration Required  Kick-off your Summer Reading Club with a rousing good time. Join the Gizmo Guys for juggling, jokes and antics that will keep you laughing all summer long!

Planning Ahead – Here’s a Summer Summary – Weekly Programs Begin July 5th:

Tuesdays at 10 and 11:30 a.m. Craftacular (ages 3-6) registration required. July 5th: Plant a Seed……and watch it grow!  Join us to read a story about how plants grow, create a fun craft, and plant your own seeds to take home and care for. We’ll be working with soil so be willing to get your hands (a little) dirty! July 12th: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star What would a summer night be without lightning bugs, a bright moon, and twinkling stars?   Join us for a story about stars in the night sky and a craft. (Note: links are for the 10 a.m. sessions, to register for the 11:30 sessions, go to our online calendar.)

Wednesdays at 2 p.m. Travel the World (grades 1-5) registration required. July 6th: Around the World in 60 minutes Join us as we get ready to travel around the world in our imaginations! We'll share stories, mad-libs, puzzles, riddles and crafts - all without leaving the library.Don't worry if you don't have a passport - we'll create those too!  July 13th: Destination Safari: Africa Safari to the continent of Africa in story, games, and crafts. We might even pick up a bit of Swahili along the way!

Wednesdays from 1:30-3:30 Book Buddies (ages 3-8, especially siblings of our World Travellers), no registration required. Drop in between 1:30 pm and 3:30 pm Come meet up with a buddy…a Book Buddy!
Our teen volunteers can’t wait to meet and sit down with our early and pre-readers and together read a story. Children can choose a picture book to have read to them or they can read to the buddy. This is a fun way to have a shared reading experience outside the family routine which helps support and encourage reading as a life long activity.

Thursdays at 10 and 11 a.m. Toddler Time (18 mo.-3) no registration required. Clapping and singing, rhymes and books….introduce your toddler to the beginnings of story time!

Thursday afternoons/evenings Performers for the Whole Family (ages vary) no registration required. July 7th: 'Mastodons, Cavemen and Bears...Oh My!!' (Suggested for grades K thru 5) 2:00 PM to 2:45 Explore the ICE AGE and the life of the cavemen and animals who lived in the world at that time! Brrrr....... July 14th 7:00-7:45 p.m. 'Journey ‘Round the World with Jeanne DePodwin' (Suggested for ages 3 and up) Bring the family and celebrate summer with a journey 'round the world with her music!  Join Jeanne DePodwin and clap your hands and stomp your feet and even get up and dance to the beat!

Fridays at 9:30 and 10:30 Baby Book Time (birth to 18 months) no registration required. Clap your hands and stamp your feet and let you baby feel the beat of stories, songs and rhymes.

Friday July 8th at 1:30 or 3:30. Lego Club (For Grades K -6) Registration Required Lego Club Hey Lego fans -Here’s a club just for you!Get together with other Lego-maniacs, share ideas and tips on building,and have a great time!Library Legos will be available for building. Check out more images from our master Lego Builders at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/bwljuv/
Lunch Bunch (For Students Entering Grades 3 - 4) Registration Required Monday July 11, 2011    12:00 PM to 1:00 PM  Story Well   Lunch Bunch Bring your brown bag lunch to our book discussion.   Titles selected are light reading  and classified as beginning chapter books; not more than 100 pages.

For full details and to register for any of these programs, click on the program in the July Bridgewater Library Online Calendar.

Phenomenon! Teen Summer Reading Kick-Off Event! (For students entering grades 6 - 12) Registration Required   Monday July 11, 2011   7:00 PM to 8:00 PM   Join the Magic of Amore and James Lazzarini as he amazes you with mind-bending tricks!  Have your mind read and your memory challenged and learn how to expand the mental powers you already have!!

Teen Summer PJ Party (For entering grades 7 - 11) Registration Required Friday July 15, 2011  7:00 PM to 12:00 AM.   Come to watch movies, check out our Wii, bake some cookies, do a craft, scavenge the library, eat ‘till you pop, or just hang out.  Come alone or bring a friend.

Make a Difference @ the Library -- Volunteer Opportunities for students entering grades 5 – 6 Wednesday July 6, 2011 and subsequent Wednesdays through August 3rd 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM Individual registration required for each week, click on the dates in the library calendar to register.
Attention students entering grades 5 and 6, here is your opportunity to make a difference by volunteering at the library. Volunteer hours will be limited to the above listed dates and times.

Teen Advisory Board Meeting (For students entering grades 6 - 12) Tuesday July 26th, 2011 6:30 to 7:30 PM Registration Required. Do you want to make a difference at your library? Do you have suggestions for programs, new books and movies? Then come to the T.A.B. meeting. Community service hours will be awarded for attendance.

@ the Library – Displays & Materials:

Hitting the Road this holiday weekend? Check out our e-audiobook selections which you can download from home 24/7 without even coming to the library.  (Of course we still have many books on CD -- and even some cassettes -- if your vehicle sports earlier generations of technology.) 

Do you have a summer reading assignment for school but can’t remember where you put the list?  Don’t worry!  Click on the School Summer Reading Lists under the “Useful Links for Families” on the right side of this blog.

START A BOOKCLUB!  Summer is a great time to start a book discussion group with your family and friends – and the library has children's book discussion kits to make the logistics easier! 
If you’d like to start your own group, librarians are delighted to share ideas and show guides to help you get started.  Come by the Youth Services Reference Desk to find out more!  (By the way, we also have over 100 adult book discussion kits!)
The Bridgewater Library offers more than two dozen children’s book discussion kits, consisting of 10 copies of the book plus a discussion guide. A list of these can be found by searching “Juvenile Book Discussion Kit” under series in our catalog. Each can be reserved and circulates for 6 weeks. If you’d like a little help getting a book discussion group started, here are some suggested titles – don’t hesitate to ask the librarians for additional titles and book recommendations:

Reading raps : a bookclub guide for librarians, kids, and families / Rita Soltan. Adult 027.625 SOL
The kids' book club book : reading ideas, recipes, activities, and smart tips for organizing terrific kids' book clubs / Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp. Juvenile Parent/Teacher 028.55 GEL
Book by book : the complete guide to creating mother-daughter book clubs / Cindy Hudson. Juvenile Parent/Teacher 367 HUD
The kids' book club : lively reading and activities for grades 1-3 / Desiree Webber and Sandy Shropshire ; illustrated by Sandy Shropshire.  Juvenile Professional  028.55 WEB
Talk about books! : a guide for book clubs, literature circles, and discussion groups, grades 4-8 / Elizabeth Knowles and Martha Smith.  Juvenile Professional 372.4162 KNO

Displays: Travel Far, Pay No Fare – Read Around the World with our books displayed atop the magazines.

Fourth of July books are atop our holiday section.

Our Parent-Teacher Display by the Early Reader shelves has books and DVDs on "Positive Discipline."

REMEMBER while you are travelling this summer, pick up a postcard from your travels and add it to our display behind the reference desk! It counts as one of your 8 activities in the Passport to Adventure. We’d love to see where everyone has been!

Around the Community:
Saturday, July 2 - Home Depot Kids' Workshops (all Home Depot locations) When: 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM Who: Ages 5-12 with a parent. How: No registration - just come by! Cost: FREE. For more info: Call the store at 908-222-7700. More info also available at www.homedepot.com.
In this Workshop, your child can make a Coaster Set. The workshops teach children do-it-yourself skills and tool safety, while at the same time helping to instill a sense of accomplishment. Additionally, this fun time allows for quality one-on-one time between adults and children. In addition to the newly constructed project kit, each child receives a kid-sized orange apron, similar to The Home Depot associates' aprons, and an achievement pin.
Saturday, July 2 - Raptor Trust Tour Talks  Where: The Raptor Trust, 1390 White Bridge Road, Millington, 07946. When: 11:00 AM (Repeats at 2:00pm) Who: All ages. How: Registration required. Call the Raptor Trust Education Center at 908-647-1091. Cost: $10 per adult; $5 per child age 12 and under. For more info: Call the Raptor Trust Education Center at 908-647-1091.
Celebrate Independence Day with a guided tour of The Raptor Trust. Learn more about the Trust’s effort to give hundreds of wild birds their freedom each year, and hear some of the fascinating stories of the 50 raptors that have found permanent homes at our center. Then join us to send a rehabilitated hawk soaring free again with an on-site hawk release! Meet at Raptor Trust Gift Shop.
Saturday, July 2 - Free Michaels Make-it Take-it Event Where: Michaels, 1701 Route 22 West, Watchung (and other Michael’s locations). When: 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM Who: Ages 3 and up. How: Just drop in during the craft time listed. Cost: FREE. For more info: Call Michaels at 908-490-1144.
Come to Michaels to celebrate Independence Day!  Make a Warrior Shield or a Bead Flag Pin and get FREE face painting!  While supplies last.

41st Annual Fourth of July Family Festival
WHO: All ages
WHEN: Monday, July 4, 5:00 PM
North Branch Park, Milltown Road, Bridgewater
www.somersetcountyparks.org or call 908.722.1200 ext. 221. Fourth of July Family Festival featuring
VERDICT and TOTAL SOUL  North 5pm – 11pm  Verdict kicks off Independence Day at North Branch Park, turning the park into a tropical vacation paradise with their rich blend of classic reggae, calypso, soca, and funk island music. Then headliners, Total Soul, an 11 piece band perform R&B, soul, and Motown hits from the 60’s through today, brought to life with a mix of four-part vocal harmony, a soul-driven rhythm section, and “hot” horns. As they boast…”there’s Nowhere to Run if you give Total Soul the opportunity to Stomp into your Brickhouse and turn the park into a Boogie Wonderland. The evening of patriotism, music and family entertainment will include performers, historical reenactments celebrating the birth of the nation, a reenactment of a Revolutionary War encampment by the Third New Jersey Regiment Revolutionary Encampment, children’s games and activities, plenty of food and a sensational display of fireworks.  Central New Jersey’s most spectacular fireworks display will take place at 9:30 PM. In the event of inclement weather, the fireworks only will be presented on July 5 or the first clear evening at 9:30 PM. Want more days of fireworks displays?  Here’s a list of other NJ fireworks displays this year.

Washington Crossing Open Air Theater 7:30 p.m. each night (adults $15, children$10):

Stars n' Stripes July 1, 2 and 3, 2011
Original Concept by Louis Palena and Jordan Brennan
A salute to America's greatest composers, with songs that reflect the American experience. Included are songs from Rodgers and Hart, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, Rodgers and Hammerstein and more! Come and celebrate the Fourth of July weekend at the Park with this very special show!

Urinetown presented by the Once Upon A Time Players July 8, 9 and 10, 2011
In grim Gotham-like city of the future, a 20-year drought has occurred. As a result, the government has banned private toiletries and the citizens must use pay-to-pee toilets regulated by a monopolistic company, the Urine Good Company, which charges exorbitant prices. Bobby Strong, the assistant custodian at the poorest urinal in town, decides enough is enough. With the help of the daughter of the CEO of the Urine Good Company, Hope Cladwell, Bobby ends up leading a rebellion to free the citizens.

NYC -- Theater on the Move 7 pm, Thursday to Sunday, through June 26
Longing for good theater outdoors? New York Classical Theatre is your answer. William Shakespeare’s Henry V in Battery Park (meet in front of Castle Clinton) and Governors Island -- Performances: July 6, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 15, 18, 19, 20, 21, 24 (Special wristbands, distributed 5:00-6:30pm on the day of each performance in front of Castle Clinton, will be required for ferry transportation to Governors Island. Limit 2 wristbands per person.)
Join in the journey with King Henry and his army from England (Castle Clinton/ Battery Park) and travel across the English Channel (New York Harbor) by boat to France (Governors Island), where the bloody Battle of Agincourt will be staged across the huge rolling vistas of the parade ground surrounding historic Fort Jay with a cast of 40!  Audience members follow the actors as they perform each scene at a different location.   Performances are free, no reservations required, but donations are suggested; mosquito repellant and picnic blankets also help. Call 212 252-4531 for cancellation due to weather. newyorkclassical.org   Kids ages 8 and up (and their parents) will love it!

Princeton University Art Museum
Artful Adventures 2011

One World, Many Songs!
Ages 4 and up
WHEN: Wednesday, July 6, 11:00 - 11:45 AM
This Watchung Library program will be held at the Watchung Arts Center, 18 Stirling Road, Watchung
COST: Free
Registration required. Register in person or online at www.somerset.lib.nj.us on the Watchung Calendar of Events page beginning June 20 at 10am, or call 908.561.0117.
For more info: Call the library at 908.561.0117. Join multiple national award-winning singer-songwriter Patricia Shih as she presents One World, Many Songs, a program she has performed at libraries across the US. Every one of the songs in her concert involves the audience's participation by singing, dancing, playing games and, of course, loving BOOKS! One of Patricia's signatures and goals is breaking down barriers between people no matter what age or background, helping everyone feel a part of community. The summer reading club theme of 'one world' makes for a perfect fit!
Tuesday, July 5 - Improve Your Chess Game
Where: Watchung Library, 12 Stirling Road, Watchung. Bicentennial Room. When: 12:30 PM (July 5, 12 and 26) Who: Ages 13 and up. How: Registration required. Register in person or online at www.somerset.lib.nj.us on the Watchung calendar of events page or call 908-561-0117. Cost: Free.
Sharpen your chess skills in a series of lessons designed for beginner through intermediate players who are serious about improving their game.  After a quick rules review we will practice chess tactics, develop strategy, discover history, and analyze amazing games.  Most class time will be spent learning new material, analyzing boards and solving puzzles with non-instructional game play kept to a minimum.
Wednesday, July 13 - Kurt Gallagher's Super Silly Songs for Summer
This Watchung Library program will be held at the Watchung Arts Center, 18 Stirling Road, Watchung. When: 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Who: Ages 3 and up. How: Registration required. Cost: Free.  Register in person or online at www.somerset.lib.nj.us on the Watchung Calendar of Events page or call 908-561-0117.
Bring the family and celebrate summer with a "wild and crazy guy" and his music!  Join Kurt Gallagher and clap your hands, stamp your feet, get up and dance to the beat.

Mr. Ray Kid and Family Concert
WHO: All Ages
WHEN: Thursday, July 14, 7:00 PM
WHERE: Warren Township Municipal Complex, 46 Mountain Boulevard front parking lot, Warren
In case of rain, the concert will be held at Watchung Hill Regional HS auditorium, 108 Stirling Road, Watchung
For more info: Call the Recreation Department at 908.753.8000 ext. 270.Back by popular demand, it's Mr. Ray! Bring your blankets, lawn chairs and picnic baskets!
"Edgy and wise, Mr. Ray's music makes sense to children"—Parenting Magazine. This rocking family show is music for the kid in all of us! Mr. Ray has been featured on Blue's Clues, XM Kids and Radio Disney.

Ridge Light Opera of New Jersey, in conjunction with Bernards Township Parks and Recreation, will present the first of the annual summer “Plays in the Park”
WHEN: July 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, and 23, at 8:00 PM
the outdoor amphitheater at Pleasant Valley Park, Valley Road (next to the Veterans Hospital at Lyons), Basking Ridge
TICKETS: Free admission
Bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating. For information, call 908.204.3003.
Ariel_and_RenThe popular musical tells the story of Ren McCormack, a Chicago teen who moves to a small town where dancing has been banned. The story is loosely based on events which took place in the small town of Elmore City, Oklahoma, where dancing was banned for almost 100 years until 1980, when its high school students gained permission to dance at their prom.
“Plays in the Park” has been a local summer tradition for many years. Bernards Township has produced over twenty years of family entertainment and achieved several awards for excellence in theater programming. “Footloose” is made possible, in part, by support from New Jersey State Council on the Arts.   For additional information, go to: www.ridgelightopera.org.

The Planetarium at RVCC has many family shows this summer including: The Skies over Hogwarts
Tuesday, July 19 and Thursday, July 21, 2011 7:30 p.m.
Join an eclectic group of witches and wizards as they guide you through a "Harry Potter"-themed tour of the night sky. Learn how JK Rowling used astronomy as the inspiration for some of her characters' names. Program runs about 45 minutes. Fee: $6 per person Reservations are highly suggested. Please call us at 908-231-8805.

EXPERIENCE THE BARD OUTDOORS & BRING THE KIDS! Two opportunities this summer to see A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The Greek Amphitheatre on the campus of the College of St. Elizabeth in Convent Station is a beautiful place to watch theater. Bring a picnic and a blanket (or a stadium chair for your back) and watch the madcap meanderings of four daft people and a raft of fairies as they make mischief in the forest. Bring the kids; the performance is 90 minutes and involves lots of physical comedy. They’ll love it…and you’ve introduced them to Shakespeare!  A Midsummer Night's Dream By William Shakespeare

WHEN: June 22 - July 31; 4:30 PM twilight performances on select Saturdays and Sundays in addition to 8:15 PM performances Tuesdays through Sundays
Greek Amphitheatre, College of St. Elizabeth, 2 Convent Road in Morris Township, Convent Station Get Directions
TICKETS: $33 for adults and $17 for young people under 17. Children under 5 go free  For tickets or more information, call the box office at 973.408.5600 or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.

STNJ’s annual Outdoor Stage production at the Greek amphitheater at the College of St. Elizabeth in Morris Township will feature the world's most popular comedy. This newly conceived, exuberant, 90-minute production will be perfect for children and families of all ages and will celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the Outdoor Stage in jubilant style. All ages will enjoy the antics of the fantastical characters that populate the magical forest in Shakespeare’s comedy—from the mischievous spirit Puck, to the whimsical fairies, to the spellbound young lovers, to the hysterical “rude mechanicals” who want to put on a play, to Nick Bottom, the weaver, who wants to perform all the roles.

Or see it for free  -- Trilogy Rep and Bernards Township Parks and Recreation will present it in the Pleasant Valley Park amphitheater at 8 pm. July 29, 30, and August 4-6:

Field ExplorationCheck out the events at the Environmental Education Center: 190 Lord Stirling Road, Basking Ridge. For more programs or to register go to  www.somersetcountyparks.org Naturalist programs or call 908-766-2489.
Here’s a sampling of their programs:
Thursday, July 7 - Wild for Blueberries!  When: 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM Who: Ages 7 to 9. Cost: $9 per child. Children will join a Naturalist to search the swamp for wild blueberries, learning how to identify and enjoy them.
Thursday, July 7 - Mad Scientist Club  Children will enjoy hands-on science.  Topic is "Crystals."  10:30 AM - 12:00 PM  Who: Ages 7 to 9.  Cost: $12 per child.
PAWS for Reading
Monday, July 11th, 7–8 PM
WHERE: Warren Library, 42 Mountain Boulevard, Warren. Program Room.
Who: All ages
Cost: Free
How: Register online at www.somerset.lib.nj.us/warren or call 908.754.5554 ext. 23 Call the Children's Desk at 908.754.5554 ext. 23.   For 5 minutes, share your favorite book with a dog.  They are very good listeners!
Thanks to www.njartsmaven.com and warren.macaronikid.com for some of these listings!

Let Your Fingers Do (More) Walking:
Last week we mentioned Books that Heal a website that helps kids cope with difficult situations including death, divorce, illness, abuse, bullying and more.  (To access this site anytime, go to our “useful links for families” section on the right side of this blog.)  But sometimes a link to a person is needed.
Helpline to Find or Form Support Groups
There are over 6,750 local mutual aid support groups available in New Jersey for many different illnesses, addictions, disabilities, bereavement situations, parenting problems, caregiver, family, and other stressful life issues. They often meet in community centers and church basements, where group members share their experiences, strengths, and hopes. They include groups like those for: individuals caring for an elderly relative; persons coping with chronic depressive illness; parents of children with a learning or physical disabilities; loved ones of those with an addiction or mental illness; those grieving the loss of a loved one; and many others.

To help a friend, family member, or yourself, the N.J. Self-Help Group Clearinghouse provides free information on these no-fee support groups. They also help those interested in joining with others to help start a needed new group in their community. For help, call them at 1-800-367-6274, more easily remembered as 1-800-FOR-M.A.S.H. (Mutual Aid Self-Help).  One can also get information from the website: www.selfhelpgroups.org

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