Educational Summer Programs for All Ages at the Orinda Library

(Jeff Heyman, Photographer)
Senior Community Library Manager, Michael Beller, talks about interactive and educational programs for kids and families this summer at the Orinda Library.

    School is out, but it doesn’t mean the learning or fun has to stop. At least not while there are interactive and educational summer programs for kids and families at the Orinda Library.
    The Summer Reading program theme, “Find Your Voice,” runs to Aug. 5.
    “All ages can pick-up Summer Reading passports and log reading and other learning activities,” said Senior Community Library Manager, Michael Beller. “Once the passport is full, it can be returned at any Contra Costa County library branch for prizes.”
    Passports can be downloaded at and patrons can enter drawings for grander prizes. For more information, visit
    Toddler Storytime, a combination of stories, movements and rhymes developed for children ages one to three and their caregivers, is every Wednesday from 10:30 to 11 a.m. No registration is necessary.
    Paws to Read, which runs Thursday afternoons in the Gallery Room, is for children in grades kindergarten to fifth. Summer Reading minutes can be earned by reading to a certified therapy dog. Registration is required.
    The anticipated “Story Walk,” is a fun, educational activity where a children’s story is placed along a popular walking trail in the community. Beller said he’s hopeful it will be installed before the end of summer.
    “The story walk is being shipped. I don’t know how long it will take or how long it will be before the City installs it,” said Beller. “Once it’s in place, I’m hoping to have a special event to kick it off.”
    Beller, who was a librarian at Mills College for nearly 15 years, joined the Contra Costa County Library System in 2017 and has been at the Orinda Branch since 2019.
    He believes reading is important because it transmits information and sparks the imagination.
    “My all-time favorite book is The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. I’ve been reading and rereading that book since I was about eight,” said Beller. “I love books where people learn to be better versions of themselves. I especially love books that explore what it means to be good, what it means to be human and what it means to live in a community. I also love biographies and PG Wodehouse.”

Charleen Earley can be reached at

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