Residents are invited to participate in the Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library’s Summer Reading Program.

Individuals of all ages can participate in the Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library’s Summer Reading in-person and virtual events program, which begins on Wednesday, June 1 and runs through Sunday, July 31.

With this year’s theme of ‘Oceans of Possibilities,’ participants will get an opportunity to learn about an array of ocean and water-related topics. All of the library’s branches will also include in-person featured weekly events held on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Reading challenges will be available for kids, tweens, teens and adults. Prizes and giveaways will also be awarded for participation in the reading challenges and virtual events. Community partners such as ZooTampa, Tampa Bay History Center, Hillsborough County Public Schools, Tampa-Hillsborough County Children’s Library Foundation, Hillsborough County Parks & Recreation and the Friends of the Library of Tampa-Hillsborough County will be assisting with the funding.

During the Summer Reading Program, people will gain knowledge about marine science, as a representative from ZooTampa will be presenting some virtual encounters with water-related animals. Also, the Tampa Bay History Center will have a couple of history classes virtually about the Hillsborough River and more.

Christopher Sturgeon, learning experiences consultant at the Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library, mentioned how individuals will benefit from summer reading.

“Every summer and throughout the year, we like to focus and encourage lifelong reading habits,” Sturgeon said.

Residents are welcomed to attend a virtual sneak peek event on Tuesday, May 17 at 6:30 p.m. This will consist of a preview of the special events, reading challenge and prizes that will occur.

Sturgeon shared his thoughts about what he hopes participants of the Summer Reading Program grasp from it.

“Just reinforcing the importance of reading with our challenges and knowing that the library is here to help them at each step of their lives, not just as kids but adults as well,” Sturgeon said.

For more information about Summer Reading Oceans of Possibilities, visit

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Tatiana Ortiz
Tatiana Ortiz is a freelance writer with the Osprey Observer Newspaper. She began as an intern here in 2010 and has been writing since. Tatiana graduated from the University of South Florida in 2015. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Public Relations. In her free time, Tatiana enjoys photography, biking and being with her family.