Thursday, August 3, 2017

Summer Reading Program Helps Kids Fight August Doldrums

There's plenty of time yet to read
wonderful books and finish
your summer reading log!
Summer break is half over -- are your kids bored yet? There’s still plenty of fun to be had through the library’s Children’s Summer Reading Program!  

Enjoy a bunch of great books with your kids, engage your teens’ creativity with essay writing and cover art contests, and sign your kids up for fun programs at the library.

If you're not signed up yet,  the program works like this:

  • Babies through third graders read (or have read to them) 15 books; fourth through sixth graders read 10 books; and teens in grades 7–12 read five books.
  • Ebooks and audio books count toward the total.
  • Kids and teens can read any books they choose.
  • Kids and teens can track their reading online or use a reading log they pick up in any Fairfax County Public Library branch.
  • Take the completed log to a library branch by September 2 to pick up your coupon book of free prizes and discounts. Teens will also be entered in a drawing for a gift card prize.

“The Summer Reading Program is Fairfax County Public Library’s way of supporting our schools…it aims to encourage children to enjoy reading,” said George Mason Regional Library Youth Services <anager, Jane Anspaugh. "It’s important for kids to read over the summer so that their reading abilities can grow and not diminish in preparation for the next school year."

The Children’s Summer Reading Program also seeks to stimulate new reading interests by providing fun group experiences that give children a chance explore their creativity and the world around them, and build social skills in the process. Programs range from story times to special events like Beech Tree Puppets, Leesburg Animal Park, Cupcake Wars (yum!). Enroll with a friend and make it a play date!

So beat the summer doldrums. Dr. Seuss once said, “You can find magic wherever you look. Sit back and relax. All you need is a book.” Sign up for the Summer Reading Program and have an amazing, magical time.

The George Mason Friends has been a major sponsor of the Fairfax County Summer Reading Program for years, and provided a $50,000 grant to the program in 2017. GMF has also established an endowment to ensure the program is funded in the future.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Adult Summer Reading Program: Why Should Kids Have All the Fun?

Mason District Library Trustee Fran
Millhouser is half way through
her summer reading list.
As we hit the warm months of summer, budget and work demands may prevent a dream vacation on a far away island, drinking out of coconuts while staring into the clear, blue waters -- but you can still escape the summertime blues through the pages of a good book. And through the George Mason Regional Library’s Adult Summer Reading Program, you can even earn a reward for having fun.

The adult program, Reading by Design, works like this: come to the library to get a log, read five books before the end of the program, fill in your log, and then return it to the Information Desk to get your choice of a free book from a provided selection or a coupon for a free book worth up to $5 at the George Mason Friends Fall Book Sale. You'll also be entered in the Adult Summer Reading Program Prize Drawing. And if you would like to earn extra entries in the prize drawing, you can write a review what you read as well!

So treat yourself to a chance to relax, try something new, and talk to friends and neighbors about what you've read. Demonstrate to your kids that taking time to read is important and talk with them about its pleasures. George Mason is home to thousands of books and Fairfax County Public Library offers many more online. Every one is a new adventure, just waiting for you!

Pick up your summer reading log at the Information Desk.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Congratulations, Mohammed Esslami!


Mohammed explains the summer
reading program to patrons.
Staff and George Mason Friends bid a fond farewell to George Mason Regional Library's Branch Manager, Mohammed Esslami, who has been promoted to Regional Branch Manager as of July 8.

"Under his leadership over the past three years, George Mason Regional Library has enhanced its role as a significant community resource," said Friends past co-president Nancy Allard. "From iPad stations in the children's area to increased programs for children and adults, Mohammed and his staff have worked hard to serve the public, and we have welcomed the opportunity to support them with funding."

Ready to serve the
cake at his farewell party.

In a recent chat about his time at George Mason, Mohammed expressed his appreciation for the incredible diversity of the people around him. He noted the people he worked with were some of the most motivated people he has ever met, and that they make the environment at George Mason very welcoming.

We wish Mohammed all the best as he takes on his new responsibilities, and look forward to seeing him as he makes the rounds in his new role!

Friday, June 30, 2017

Suzanne LaPierre Wins 2017 George Mason Friends Scholarship

Duwain Ketch, Foundation Scholarship Committee Chair, presents the 2017 George Mason Friends Scholarship to Recipient Suzanne LaPierre. With (from left) FCPL Trustee Suzanne Levy; Fairfax Library Foundation Executive Director Susan Harman; FCPL Director Jessica Hudson; George Mason Friends Board Members Charlotte Sell and Laura Noble;  FCPL Trustee Fran Millhouser.
We are proud to announce that Ms. Suzanne LaPierre is the recipient of the 2017 George Mason Friends Graduate-Level Academic Scholarship. She is a Library Information Assistant at the City of Fairfax Regional Library, and is pursuing a Master of Library and Information Science at the University of South Carolina.

As you can see from  her comments below, Suzanne has an impressive background and a thought-provoking vision for what she'd like to accomplish in the future:

After eleven years working in Information Services for Fairfax County Public Library, I am happy to finally have made the leap towards a Masters in Library and Information Science with a generous scholarship from the Fairfax Library Foundation and the George Mason Friends. 

Now more than ever, I think libraries have an important role to play in helping all citizens become more discerning users of information. With ever more information at our fingertips, ironically it’s become harder to sort fact from fiction. Social media has changed the way we receive news; search engines are tailored increasingly to the user’s biases, causing people to become more entrenched in one world view. I’m interested in exploring ways libraries and librarians can help untangle some of the confusion.

Another passion of mine is the arts. I have a background in visual arts and museums, with a MA in Museum Studies from George Washington University and a BFA in Painting from the Rhode Island School of Design. I'd love to explore how libraries can partner with creative groups in Fairfax County to forge meaningful opportunities for community empowerment and engagement.

And of course - I love to read, recommend books, and find out what other people are reading!  I am one of the writers for the Fairfax County Library blog About Books: http://fairfaxcountypubliclibrary.blogspot.com/.  So if you see me at the library, don't hesitate to exchange reading recommendations!

Congratulations, Suzanne, from all of us at George Mason Friends!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

GMF Receives Recognition for Book Donations

Our beautiful award from the DC
CFSA for supporting literacy.
In addition to the semi-annual book sales and year-around Amazon sales, George Mason Friends also shares a portion of the book donations we receive with the library and other local organizations.

In March, one of those organizations, the DC Child and Family Services Agency, expressed their appreciation to us and the Friends of the Tyson-Pimmit Regional Library for contributing hundreds of books to inspire reading among the children the agency serves.

We, in turn, extend our appreciation to all our donors, who generously provide so many good-quality books and media, allowing us to support important literacy efforts in the region. Thank you!

Friday, May 5, 2017

THANK YOU, VOLUNTEERS!

It takes many hands and many, many hours of hard work to pull off a book sale like ours -- but you pitched in cheerfully and helped us raise enough to help fund the Fairfax summer reading program, library programs, and more.

And just importantly, thanks to your hard work, book lovers of all sizes and interests found something to smile about! 



Sunday, April 30, 2017

Today: Half Off Everything at the Sale!

Our Spring 2017 book sale is wrapping up today, but we still have plenty of terrific bargains waiting for you.

To make sure as much as possible ends up in good homes, all items are half-price on Sunday!

The book sale (but not library services) will open at noon and closes promptly at 5 pm.

Hope to see you there!