Children aged 0 through pre-K were invited to bring the special “grand” in their life — Grandma, Grandpa, Nana, Papa, Opa and/or Oma — to this celebration of two generations. The program included crafts, Bingo, interactive fitness activities and a photo booth, as well as a story time with the children's librarian and sing-along.
Grandparent's Day is frequently overlooked, so our recreation department and public library joined forces to create a short program for grandparents and little ones. This year, 2019, marked our third time offering this annual program, and each year has grown, with new attendees every year.
The first year we planned this program for 2.5 hours. Not only was this too long, but we also failed to include the greatly admired children's librarian. In the second year, the program was abbreviated to 1.5 hours, with the librarian offering a special grandparent-related story time. This is our third year, and we had over 40 people — grandparents and their grandbabies — in attendance. We held the program on a Friday morning from 10 to 11:30 a.m.
We began preparing for the September event over the summer, when we selected the date with our recreation department. A week or so before the event, we prepared small crafts suitable for children ages 0 to 5. Two days prior, we purchased items (e.g. snacks, fruit, juice) from Sam's Club/Costco.
We marketed this program in our city's recreation brochure, on Facebook, and in fliers posted around town. We also added the event to our recreation department and library websites.
The program required less than $50 for food and paper products.
Two staff members, plus the children's librarian, set up card tables, each with a unique craft. Crafts included a Handprint Tree, made with paints, an "All About My Grand" fill-in sheet, and popsicle stick picture frames — we took pictures onsite and printed them. We also put out a special chair for story time, in order to create a different area to shift the attention from crafts to story time.
People started to arrive 15 minutes early, but crafts were already set up on tables. All the crafts were simple and self explanatory — people were able to visit each station to complete the craft, where all the materials were set out.
The librarian started the special story time after one hour — 30 minutes before the program was scheduled to end.
Takeaways included hand prints done with paint and other mementos for grandparents.
This program attracts newer grandparents, young grandparents with maybe one or two young grandchildren. In the three years we have hosted, we have only had two families return because their children age out. Be sure to have plenty of activities and snacks!
About This Library
Our Mission: The Saint Peter Public Library welcomes all people and fosters a safe environment to connect, learn, discover and grow.
Our Vision: We envision the Saint Peter Public Library as a place where all people can gather and are welcome. We imagine our library as a place to create opportunities for lifelong learning, which will strengthen our community.
The Saint Peter Public Library serves 33,727 patrons and has issued 8,726 library cards. On average, we have 200 daily visitors walk through our doors during the week and 250 on the weekend. We are a single-branch library in a rural community and are the only library in Nicollet County, Minn., serving cities, communities and townships.