Library sets Valentine’s event

Published 10:02 pm Monday, February 6, 2017

By Alex Perry

Special to the News-Herald

The Suffolk Public Library will host a Family Fun Valentine’s Day event from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the recently renovated North Suffolk Library location.

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The day will start with children’s stories at 10:30, followed by a tea party with decorations, juice and cookies.

The event is free of charge and is organized by the library’s Youth and Family Services department, which is reaching out to people of all ages to encourage activities, learning and imagination in the safe environment of the library.

Multiple activities will be available for children and their parents. Those that want to do arts and crafts can make lovebugs or lace hearts. There will be a photo booth with costumes and props. Everything will be organized in the child’s play area under staff supervision.

“You try to do different activities so that when everybody comes there’s something they’d be interested in doing,” North Suffolk Library coordinator Frances Jornov said. “Not everybody wants to do an art project.”

Library programs cater to all age groups, from young children to teenagers. Jornov says children can learn through playing, and the library’s programs encourage them to be active participants.

The children aren’t just dressing up as cowboys and princesses but also are learning more about themselves through the library’s programs.

One of the programs, called “I want to be,” allows children to think about their interests and passions. “I want to be firefighter,” for instance, featured what Jornov called “firemen’s training.”

“We actually had a firefighter come from the North Suffolk fire station, and they pretended they were driving the truck,” she said. “I had chairs with a sheet clipped to them, and they had to crawl under the smoke.”

The library’s goal is to fill its monthly schedules with a good balance of classes and events for different ages.

There will also be the “Adulting 101: Get a Job” workshop Thursday for teenagers and young adults at the North Suffolk Library, and a “Little Scientists” activities class is scheduled for Friday for children age 3-5 at Morgan Memorial Library in the downtown area.

Marketing and community relations coordinator Angie Sumner said the library is “building experiences” with these programs, and staff members hope to inspire “big ideas” among those who participate in the programs.

“This whole year is all about big ideas, so beyond experiences, we’re challenging people to come up with their goals — what they want to do, and what they want to accomplish — from the little ones up to the adults,” she said.

Above all, the staff wants to support the Suffolk community by working with it through these programs. Jornov has worked for the library for the last 17 years, and she said she wants to keep it a safe place for activities and learning.

“Many years ago, when I had young children, I brought them to the library for things,” Jornov said. “It’s always been that way. We are taking care of the community and reaching out to them.”