May 2023 Newsletter: Gearing up for Summer!

Summer is nearly here, and we’re hard at work to get ready for all kinds of fun! Check out what’s going on at the library in this month’s newsletter.

Featured: Summer Reading Program

We’ve been hard at work preparing for this year’s summer reading program! The theme this year is “All Together Now,” and we have lots of fun plans to celebrate reading and community all summer long. 

Early registration starts Wednesday, May 17, and you can start tracking your reading on June 5. Track your reading online or using a paper log throughout the summer, and everyone who completes the program will receive a prize. You’ll also be entered to win one of our grand prizes! There are separate categories for pre-K, kids, teens, and adults. You can sign up online at, or you can come into the library in-person and we’ll help you get registered! 

In addition to tracking your reading, we have lots of great programs planned for all ages this summer. The summer reading program kickoff event will be at the library on Monday, June 5, from 5-8pm, and feature two performances by the Striped Circus! The event will also include an open house in the Maker Studio with a variety of science-educators from around the East Lansing community (Abrams Planetarium, the FRIB, the MSU Museum, and more). Learn about some of the wonderful STEAM educational programming and resources that will be available at the Library’s Maker Studio and throughout the broader East Lansing community this summer!

In addition to the program kickoff, we’ll have a variety of special programs throughout the summer featuring community partners and fun activities. All summer reading programs are free of cost, open to the public, no registration required, unless otherwise noted on our website.

Lastly, continuing with the themes of “All Together Now” and celebrating ELPL’s 100th birthday, we’ll be holding a few collection drives to support community non-profits over the summer. In June we’ll be collecting cleaning supplies for Haven House, in July we’ll be collecting items for the Constellation Cat Cafe, and in August we’ll be collecting items for EVE (End Violent Encounters). Our goal is to raise at least 100 items for each organization! To learn more and see what items we’re asking for, visit our blog.

Stay tuned for more details coming soon about the summer reading program! We’re so excited to celebrate reading and have a great summer with you, all together now!

Featured: 100 Bird Challenge

In March we launched the 100 Book Challenge, and in April, we launched the 100 Bird Challenge! Bird enthusiasts are encouraged to pick up a tracking sheet from the service desk, and check off a box every time you observe a new type of bird! "Type" can mean any variety of bird with a distinct visual presentation; for example, male/female birds of dimorphic species, juveniles, morphs, etc. can all count as a new observation! Once you’ve observed 100 types of birds, bring your tracking sheet into the library to receive a small commemorative prize!

To assist you in your observations, don’t forget we have birding kits and hiking kits available for checkout! Birding kits include a pair of binoculars, two field guide books, an Audubon bird call, and a brochure, all to help you find cool birds on the go! Birding kits were generously donated by Wild Birds Unlimited of East Lansing.

If you already have your own birding supplies, you may also be interested in our hiking kits, which include more general supplies to enjoy nature: a pair of binoculars, a compass, three field guide notebooks, a sketch kit, a deck of Nature Circles, and a variety of books and brochures about birds, wildflowers, and nature of the midwest.

We also have an amazing bird sanctuary located behind the library, visible through the big bay windows. We get a huge variety of wildlife at those bird feeders, so stop by the library sometime and enjoy logging some observations! Our bird sanctuary was also generously made possible by Wild Birds Unlimited of East Lansing.

Lastly, if you’re interested in birding, be sure to join the ELPL Birders Club! This casual, all-ages group meets once a month at the library to share cool bird stories and hang out with fellow bird enthusiasts. In addition to these monthly meetings, there will also be a variety of off-site outings, where birders will get the chance to go for a nature walk together and experience cool birds together. Check out the full schedule of events here.

Featured: Paging Through the Past

We’ve started a new series called “Paging Through the Past,” which explores the library’s storied history, decade by decade! Watch the third episode below, which talks about the library’s developments in the 1940s, and shares some of the most popular titles and interesting library rules from the decade:

Featured: Books, Bites, & Bids 2023

Books, Bites, & Bids 2023 was a success! We are truly overwhelmed by the generosity of our community. Thank you so much for all your support! We had incredible auction items, food and drink, and a wonderful turnout. It was such a fun evening!

Featured: May Programs

Check out what’s happening this month at the library! For more information about these events and others, visit our events page.

Up and Coming Dates:

  • Wednesday, May 17, summer reading program early registration opens!     
    • You can begin actually tracking your reading on June 5.
  • Sunday, May 28 and Monday, May 29, the library will be closed for Memorial Day. This will begin our summer Sunday closures.

Catch ELPL Next Month:

Be on the lookout for more excitement in June! ELPL will be sharing featured reading lists, book displays, and programs throughout the month. Some of the library programs will include:

  • Summer Reading Program Kickoff!
  • Pride Month Celebrations
  • Juneteenth Celebrations
  • Constellation Cat Cafe Visits
  • Stories in the Garden
  • Family History Workshops
  • And more!

For more information, visit the library’s website at, or follow ELPL on social media!