Summer Reading begins June 1

Whatcom County Library System’s annual Summer Reading program for kids, teens and adults begins June 1. The county library system is partnering with Whatcom County Library Foundation and Whatcom Million Trees Project to encourage readers to achieve a shared goal of planting 250 trees in Whatcom County. Starting June 1, readers can pick up a Summer Reading card at WCLS branches and bookmobile stops, or download a card at the library system’s website,  

To reach the goal, young people and adults will choose from a range of fun activities listed on their Summer Reading card. Readers will track their progress on the card and report their results when they visit a county library branch. For every 100 activities completed by WCLS readers between June 1 and Aug. 31, a tree will be planted by Whatcom Million Trees Project (up to a total of 250 trees). 

Activities include the obvious: read a book, listen to an audiobook, visit a library. And the unexpected: walk in a forest, hug a tree, write a tree poem. The Summer Reading webpage includes reading recommendations, including books about trees. 

Summer Reading kickoff parties are Monday, June 24-Saturday, June 29 at WCLS locations and bookmobile stops. See dates, times and locations at or at the library system’s online events calendar, At the parties, library staff will host free craft activities, share details about the extensive summer library programs and offer book recommendations.  Kids and teens can also select a free Summer Reading book to keep. The giveaway books are funded by Whatcom County Library Foundation. Summer Reading will also be celebrated at WCLS’s July 14 Pride in the Park event at Marine Park in Blaine, including the opportunity for young people to choose a book to keep.

Read about Summer Reading events in the latest issue of WCLS’s Explorations magazine, which is available at branches or online. Find more free library events online at

WCLS Summer Reading cards are available in English, Punjabi, Russian and Spanish languages. WCLS’s Summer Reading program ends Aug. 31, 2024. Readers may also join Bellingham Public Library’s Summer Reading program. Learn more at WCLS and Bellingham Public Library are separate library systems that share a collection of materials, resulting in a robust selection of choices for Bellingham and Whatcom County neighbors.  

“I hope community members will join us this summer as we read for the trees,” says Sarah Lavender, youth services librarian at the Ferndale Library and leader of WCLS’s Summer Reading program. “Together, we can fill Whatcom County with trees and stories.”