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April 12
1738 - Fr. Francisco Garcés born in Spain; came through SCV in 1776, found Tataviam fighting with Coastal Chumash, observed Santa Clara River flowing by night and dry by day despite the season being spring [story]
Garces statue


jason gibbs on committee

With school ending and summer break just around the corner, the Santa Clarita Public Library has everything you need to keep your family busy and engaged with reading, crafts and outdoor programs.

I invite all of our residents to take part in this year’s Summer Reading Program. The theme is “Read Beyond the Beaten Path,” which encourages residents to combine reading with camping, adventure, skill development and more.

Get ready to bring the books out of the house, and immerse yourself and your family in nature. This seven-week program begins on June 6 and offers residents a wide variety of interactive and engaging programs like campfire songs, crafts, outdoor exploration challenges, nature scavenger hunts and, of course – reading!

Once residents register for the program, everything is at their fingertips. Come out to the Library branches for bilingual Storytime, delve into one of the many reading challenges online and track your days read, or get creative and participate in any of the art programs. While you and your family track your reading, you can be entered to win different prizes and badges throughout the summer.

As someone who loves to spend time with my family out and about in our city, I am excited that the library has extended its four walls to include our local parks. Children, teens and adult programming will take place throughout the week at a variety of local parks, stimulating all of the senses. For parents of our littlest residents, make sure to bring them to the Little Explorers Program. This class is designed for children under five to enjoy interactive sensory playtime, art and exploration.

One event I am looking forward to is the Super Moon Hike on June 14. Residents are invited to come to Central Park and enjoy a leisurely hike up the mountainside to enjoy a 360-degree view of Santa Clarita soaked in the moonlight. Be sure to bring your hiking shoes and flashlights for what will be an unforgettable night at the park.

This year, the program is summer camp-themed, which isn’t just reflected in our programming but at the three Library branches. Each Library location will have a designated camp creature for participants to represent proudly. At the Old Town Newhall Branch, participants will be the blue hedgehogs, while at the Valencia Branch, camp goers will be known as the purple possums. And at the Canyon Country Jo Anne Darcy Branch, participants will be the green raccoons.

I am happy to say that in addition to all of the free programming at the Libraries this summer, the Newhall and Canyon Country branches will be offering “Lunch at the Library.” This California State Library project was developed by the California Library Association and the California Summer Meal Coalition to help provide free meal services for residents 18 and younger.

This year, the City of Santa Clarita worked in collaboration with School Day Café to serve our residents both hot and cold lunches on site. Youth can receive their lunches Monday through Friday, between noon and 1:00 p.m. at both branches.

As a father with kids who love to go to the Library, I hope that all of our residents take advantage of the wonderful programming during this year’s Summer Reading Program. With so many options available for our community members, there is something everyone will enjoy.

I look forward to seeing you in our Libraries and out at the parks. If you would like to register for the Summer Reading Program or to view all of the scheduled programs, please visit Santa Clarita Reads.

Mayor Pro Tem Jason Gibbs is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at jgibbs@santa-clarita.com.

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