Since 1995, the Phillies have supported the Free Library of Philadelphia's Summer Reading program. Summer Reading combines fun and educational activities, while helping students to maintain and improve reading levels over the summer months. The program promotes literacy and libraries while encouraging children, teens, and adults, particularly non- or reluctant readers, to use the Library's many resources. It offers a safe, productive, and structured environment to Philadelphia's youth during the summer months. During the summer of 2008, nearly 66,000 children and teens participated in Summer Reading activities in 53 library locations throughout the city, again proving that the library is an effective tool in sustaining summertime literacy through age-appropriate reading and recreational activities.
Be Creative @ Your Library, ran from June 15 through August 14, 2009. Through books, music, computers, and special Library-based programs, children and teens will be given the opportunity to display their creativity every day. Children and teens participate in the program at the Free Library's 53 branch locations, the Central Library and the Library for the Blind and the Physically Handicapped.
This year the Free Library is offering a pilot bi-lingual summer reading program at 11 branches across the region. The branches selected are in geographical areas with a large Spanish speaking population.
Weekly incentive prizes encourage participants to stay involved and rewarded their achievements. Children and teens earned prizes for activities such as reading a book, signing up for a library card, using the online catalog, reading to a friend or sibling, or participating in a library program. In order to encourage children to make reading a priority, the Phillies will provide fun and exciting incentive prizes including backpacks, helmets, and Phillies tickets!