The Queens Library website has both a Kids and a Teens Home page and is an invaluable resource to keep track of opening hours and the myriad of events those living in Queens can benefit from. With 60+ branches throughout the borough it is not unusual to find yourself in walking distance to at least one, if not two, neighborhood locations.
Just some of the events held on a weekly or monthly basis throughout the various branch libraries include:
Lego Builders Club for Young Kids
Toddler Time; Family Story Time
Cuddle-up Chinese Story-time
Read to Me; Origami Program
Cartooning and Drawing
Chess for Teens
Teen Jeopardy Challenge
The brand-new Children’s Library Discovery Center, located at 89-11 Merrick Blvd between 89th and 90th Aves in Jamaica, includes hands-on interactive exhibits and learning labs to enable children ages 3-12 to research and learn while discovering the joy of scientific exploration. It is the first children’s library in the country to offer young visitors a hybrid museum-library experience. Welcoming kids at the entrance is a sprawling floor map of Queens neighborhoods, several of which trigger sounds—like the cheer of fans at a Mets game or the sound of jets at La Guardia Airport. There are interactive, science-themed stations designed by the San Francisco Exploratorium where kids can explore concepts like simple machines (pulley, lever, wheel and axle), fossils, lunar and solar eclipses, and electricity. A separate section for toddlers includes a huge aquarium and an electrified simulation of a wave rolling in.
Situated on a prominent waterfront site just across the East River from the United Nations and Roosevelt Island, the Queens Library at Hunters Point is scheduled to begin construction early next year. In addition to the stacks, the new library will house reading areas, a gallery, public assembly multi-purpose meeting room for community programming including after-school study, readings, and various locally based events, and associated library staff and support areas. There will be designated children’s area, teen area and adult area.
Both these new additions to the Queens Library network are a striking expression of the continuing effort to recast libraries as lively communal hubs. Be sure to check in with your local branch online and click on the events calendar. You will be pleasantly surprised by the diverse offerings. And especially as the weather starts to chill what better place to spend some time out – inspiring a love of books, words and learning – than your local library.