Old Bridge, NJ – April 15, 2016 – This spring, the Old Bridge Public Library will continue its wide array of youth programs that celebrate cultural diversity.  The programs are geared towards children of all ages and their families, and are funded by the Library’s recent Dia grant.

            On Sat. April 30th at 3pm, Youth Stages will celebrate the 20th anniversary of Children’s Book Day with a presentation of Anansi and the Moss Covered Rock.  The event will tell the story of Anansi, the trickster spider of African folklore, as he plays a joke on animal friends. This family program is interactive and entertaining. Youth Stages is an arts-in-education organization representing professional actor-educators and providing creative drama and theatre arts programming for the community, including schools, libraries and recreation departments.  The group encourages active participation through visual arts, music, movement, storytelling, and drama activities, helping bring learning to life.

Then, on Wed. May 4th at 4pm, the Library will host a program on Mexican Celebrations.  Attendees will learn about Mexican holidays, including Cinco de Mayo and Dia de los Muertos, through story time and craft. In addition, on Fri. May 6th at 7pm, the regular Tweens Night Out program will feature a Cinco de Mayo theme, honoring the day that the outnumbered Mexican army had an unlikely win over the powerful French forces in the city of Puebla. Kids ages 8-12 are invited to this event to learn about Mexico and celebrate this important holiday.

Next, on Wed. May 11th at 4pm, there will be a program entitled, “Not so Scary Stories from around the World,” where participants will pretend to be camping as they make edible campfires and listen to “slightly” scary stories from around the world.

Then, on Wed. May 18th at 4pm, the Library will present “My Tooth is Loose! Tooth Fairy Stories from Around the World,” which will discuss how children in various countries deal with the loss of their teeth.  Attendees will learn about various traditions, such as how some kids toss their teeth onto their roof instead of putting them under the pillow, and how some receive chickens instead of money. The program will also include a craft and story.

Lastly, on Wed. May 25th at 7pm, there will be a Yummm, Food program. Geared towards young and old “foodies,” this session will feature food themes and multi-cultural food stories, and participants will create fruit sushi, made with bananas and strawberries.

The Old Bridge Public Library was a recent recipient of a “Dia” grant from the American Library Association’s Association for Library Service to Children division. Funded by the Dollar General Corp., the Dia grant (El día de los niños/El día de los libros – Children’s Book Day), focuses on the importance of literacy for children of all linguistic and cultural backgrounds.  In addition to funding multi-cultural programming, the $2,000 grant has been used to purchase 10 Playaway Launch Pads, which are secure, pre-loaded learning tablets created for children’s use in a library setting.

The Old Bridge Public Library was recently voted “Best Public Library in Middlesex County” by the readers of the Home News Tribune. The Library is open seven-days-a-week and is located at 1 Old Bridge Plaza at the corner of Rt. 516 and Cottrell Road in the Municipal Center. More information about Library programs, as well as program registration, can be found at www.oldbridgelibrary.org or by calling 732-721-5600 x5033. The satellite Laurence Harbor branch is located at 277 Shoreland Circle; phone: 732-566-2227.



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