Summer at the Library

NYC Libraries Launch Citywide Summer at the Library Campaign to Support Students 

Initiative features giveaway of 15,000 books at select branches provided by the New York Life Foundation and highlights activities at branches across the five boroughs

JUNE 4, 2024—New York City’s three library systems—Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), New York Public Library (NYPL), and Queens Public Library (QPL) — announced today the launch of Summer at the Library, a series of events and programs held at branches across the five boroughs designed to support students of all ages over the summer. NYPL’s Brian Bannon, Merryl and James Tisch Director of Branch Libraries and Education, was joined by BPL President Linda E. Johnson and QPL President Dennis M. Walcott at Bronx Library Center for an event this morning with the New York Life Foundation, NYC Public Schools, and local students to kick off the campaign, which featured a book giveaway for attendees and activities held throughout the day for children and teens. 

The inaugural summer event celebrates the traditional summer programming that libraries have offered New York City’s students for decades. The three systems will continue the festivities this weekend with a special giveaway of 15,000 books for children, provided by the New York Life Foundation, the 2024 city-wide sponsor for Summer Reading and Learning Programs. Books in English and Spanish for children ages 12 and under will be available at select branches throughout the City to further support Summer at the Library, which highlights the free activities, reading challenges and programs available to New Yorkers. 

“Summer is the season of possibility. You can explore the wonders of the city or travel to far off places from the pages of a book,” said Linda E. Johnson, President and CEO, Brooklyn Public Library. “With the generous support of the New York Life Foundation and the thousands of free books and resources available with your library card, there are endless opportunities for discovery this summer.”

“The New York Public Library is thrilled to kick off Summer at the Library with our friends at Brooklyn and Queens Public Libraries. Summer programming at New York City’s libraries has been a beloved community resource for decades and reflects our deep commitment to students. We know how important it is to have fun and educational opportunities that support lifelong learning and Summer at the Library ensures that our young patrons continue to have that support while they’re out of school. With the generous support of our long-time Summer Learning partner, the New York Life Foundation, we are able to make that happen. Whatever your plans are for the summer, the Library is here for you,” said Anthony W. Marx, President of The New York Public Library.

Summer at the Library is this summer’s ultimate staycation. Everyone who comes through the doors of any public library can expect a great adventure without leaving the City of New York,” said Dennis M. Walcott, President and CEO of Queens Public Library. “The creative, dedicated staff at the Queens, Brooklyn and New York public libraries have developed an outstanding lineup of programs and activities that will transport people to new worlds in safe, welcoming and cool spaces. We are grateful to the New York Life Foundation for their tremendous support as we work to deliver the thrill of discovery and joy of learning to all.”   

“The New York Life Foundation is proud to be the 2024 city-wide sponsor for the Summer Reading Program. Since 2018, the Foundation has been the major supporter of the Summer Reading Program across all three public library systems reaching thousands of children.  We are excited to sponsor the second year of the New York Life Foundation’s Summer Book Giveaway, providing 15,000 free books to children across the city. Enriching summer programs, like the ones provided by the libraries, help children learn in a fun way during the summer months,” said Heather Nesle, President of the New York Life Foundation.

It is estimated that summer vacation causes the average student to lose up to two months of instruction per year and has a disproportionate effect on students from low-income families. Studies have repeatedly demonstrated that home libraries and access to books from a young age contribute significantly to better educational outcomes for children. When children have books in their homes and are read to by parents and caregivers, they are not only more likely to do well in school, but also develop a greater awareness of the diverse experiences and perspectives of others. 

To combat learning loss, the New York Life Foundation has partnered with New York City’s libraries for the past six summers in support of summer programming and book giveaways for students. 

In addition to the book giveaways, the libraries will offer hundreds of activities planned throughout the summer including author talks, storytimes, reading challenges, writing contests, STEAM activities, arts and crafts, performances and more. Those 13 and up can explore expanded teen centers throughout the city and the whole family can checkout exhibitions and more through the Library’s Culture Pass program, providing free museum passes. Highlights from each system are highlighted below. Families and students can also learn more about events in their neighborhood at

Below are details about the book giveaway and summer programming at each of the three systems:

Brooklyn Public Library
12 noon to 3 p.m.

Thursday, June 6
New Lots Library. 655 New Lots Avenue

Friday, June 7
Brighton Beach Library, 16 Brighton Rd

Saturday, June 8
Sunset Park Library, 5108 Fourth Ave

In addition to the book giveaways, Brooklyn Public Library will offer a wide range of programs and resources for young people including performances, art programs, dance parties, author talks, and more. Highlights include:

  • Reading with a Therapy Dog (Borough Park Library)
  • Family Summer Concert Series (Park Slope Library) and
  • BPL’s annual By Teens For Teens Summer Fair (Central Library), and 
  • Browse the Branches: Pick up a booklet at any Brooklyn Public Library location. Visit a branch, collect its special sticker and place it in the corresponding entry of your Browse the Branches booklet. Win special prizes when you visit half or all the 62 branches.

To find out about dates and locations, check the calendar.This summer Brooklyn Public Library is also celebrating the tenth anniversary of Book Match. Get a customized list of books to read just for you, selected by a librarian, and stay tuned throughout the summer for more about this special program.

Queens Public Library

Book giveaways will be held at the following branches:

  • Central Library (89-11 Merrick Boulevard), Thursday, June 6, 12 pm
  • Corona (38-23 104 Street), Thursday, June 6, 12 pm
  • Arverne (312 Beach 54 Street), Thursday, June 6, 12 pm
  • Flushing (41-17 Main Street), Friday, June 7, 2 pm

In addition to the book giveaways, Queens Public Library will offer a series of engaging programs and resources for children and teens, including summer clubs focused on topics such as podcasting, architecture, robotics, manga, drones and 3-D modeling, as well as art workshops, reading challenges, dance classes, and more. Highlights include:

  • Physical Storytelling: Telling Stories Without Words! (Woodhaven Library, Wednesday, June 5, 4 pm)
  • International Animals Dance Party, a Singalong in Spanish and English (Glendale Library, Wednesday, June 12, 3 pm and Sunnyside Library, Friday, June 28, 2 pm)
  • From the Statue of Liberty to the Barrio, A Musical Tour of NYC (Ozone Park Library, Friday, June 21, 11 am)
  • Haitian Folkloric Dance For Kids (Lefferts Library, Friday, June 21, 4 pm)
  • Fantastic Flowers with Queens Botanical Garden (Rego Park Library, Wednesday, June 26, 3:30 pm)

To check the full array of the QPL’s summer programming, go here

The New York Public Library

Book giveaways will be held at the following branches on June 8:

  • Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library (455 Fifth Avenue, Manhattan)
  • St. George Library Center (5 Central Avenue, Staten Island)
  • Bronx Library Center (310 E Kingsbridge Rd, Bronx)

In addition to the book giveaway, NYPL will offer a series of engaging programs for children and teens at neighborhood branches throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island. A full list of programs available at branches system-wide is available here. Students attending today’s event were able to: 

  • Write poems at a poetry-writing station,
  • Plant seeds at Bronx Library Center’s greenhouse, 
  • Create their own self-portrait to add to the branch’s community collage 
  • Take a selfie at the branch’s photo booth. 

Over the past year, the Library has opened over 20 new or enhanced teen centers, which will also host unique and dedicated programs for young adults this summer. The teen centers are part of Teens 360º, a Library initiative and Tisch Youth Education Program led by the Merryl and James Tisch Director of Branch Libraries and Education. These dedicated centers focus on interest-driven learning and innovative programs informed by teens themselves to support digital literacy and technology skills, teen empowerment and civic engagement, the exploration of teen voice and social identity, mental wellness, and mentoring opportunities. More information about the initiative and the programs and services created for teens is available here.  

Adults can also enjoy the summer reading challenges available at libraries, including a special reading challenge for adults (with a grand prize), sponsored by the National Book Foundation. Exciting events for adults happening at NYPL branches throughout the Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island – from book discussions and author talks to theater performances and birding workshops, there’s something for everyone this summer at the Library! 


Lead support for Brooklyn Public Library’s Summer Reading 2024 program is provided by the National Grid Foundation.

The program is supported by Con Edison. CBS2/WLNY is the official media partner for Brooklyn Public Library's Summer Reading 2024.

Support for The New York Public Library is provided by Jane Lauder; The Rona Jaffe Foundation; New York Yankees Foundation; Montblanc; anonymous donors; and the continuing major support of the Andreas C. Dracopoulos Family Endowment for Young Audiences. 

These programs and initiatives are part of the Library’s overall commitment to our branch patrons and education programs, led by the Merryl and James Tisch Director of Branch Libraries and Education. Major support for educational programming is provided by Merryl H. and James S. Tisch.


About Brooklyn Public Library
Brooklyn Public Library is one of the nation’s largest library systems and among New York City’s most democratic institutions. As a leader in developing modern 21st century libraries, we provide resources to support personal advancement, foster civic literacy, and strengthen the fabric of community among the more than 2.6 million individuals who call Brooklyn home. We provide nearly 65,000 free programs a year with writers, thinkers, artists, and educators—from around the corner and around the world. And we give patrons millions of opportunities to enjoy one of life’s greatest satisfactions: the joy of a good book.

About The New York Public Library
For over 125 years, The New York Public Library has been a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars. The New York Public Library receives millions of  visits through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at

About Queens Public Library
Queens Public Library is one of the largest and busiest public library systems in the United States, dedicated to serving the most ethnically and culturally diverse area in the country.  An independent, non-profit organization founded in 1896, Queens Public Library offers free access to a collection of more than 5 million books and other materials in 50 languages, technology and digital resources. Each year, the Library hosts tens of thousands of online and in-person educational, cultural, and civic programs and welcomes millions of visitors through its doors. With a presence in nearly every neighborhood across the borough of Queens, the Library consists of 66 locations, including branch libraries, a Central Library, seven adult learning centers, a technology center located in the nation’s largest public housing complex, and a community learning center at another public housing complex, the Ravenswood Houses. It also has five teen centers, two bookmobiles, and two book bicycles. 


Contacts:    BPL – Fritzi Bodenheimer, 929.276.4232

                     NYPL – Amy Geduldig | | 212-592-7177

                     QPL – Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska,, 917 702 0016