By Beth Taylor
With a college-lounge atmosphere and fun programs geared toward teens, the Fishers Library is becoming a cool place for kids to hang out and decompress or complete school work assignments.
The Fishers Library has a teen advisory board comprised of Fishers and Hamilton Southeastern students. “We will talk about what we have coming up for the month and they help spread the word at school,” said Anders Arnold, the library’s youth paraprofessional. The TAB group meets with Arnold to plan fun activities that kids will want to attend.
Arnold started began his job at the library last November. “My first thing was to find out what kids want, “said Arnold. “We talked about writing workshops, poetry slams and fun things like Lock-in parties. My goal is to get a wide variety of things to offer. We want to focus on people who don’t normally come to the library. I think they will be surprised when they see what we have to offer.”
On April 17, the library becomes a Harry Potter Hangout. The evening lock-in event begins at 6 p.m. and will include individual and team activities throughout the evening with an emphasis on The Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Teens are encourage to dress up as their favorite character. Planned activities include scavenger hunts, trivia and magic spells for ages 13 through 19. “We’ve looked into playing a modified version of Quidditch,” said Arnold.
“Anders just started in November. He brings in an interesting viewpoint. He’s done a really great job of adding programs we haven’t seen before,” said Youth Services Team Leader, Melissa Dragoo.
The next Puppies & Popcorn event is scheduled for April 21. Therapy dogs from Love on a Leash are brought in to help busy teens relax. “We have games for the dogs and tables with popcorn—kids interact with the therapy dogs,” said Arnold.
The library’s largest event, Star Wars Day, happens on May 2. “It’s a family event with activities for all ages,” said Dragoo. “We’ve had about 3,000 people attend the event.” Light saber training and robotics demonstrations expose kids to technology with the Star Wars theme tie-in.