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Winter break activities abound at local libraries

MORRIS – Winter break has arrived for local students, but organizations in the area have made sure kids will have no shortage of activities on their time off.

“We schedule a lot of events over break so the kids have something to do, especially for the second half of break – I think the kids start getting antsy just sitting in their house,” said Liz Serruto, program supervisor at the Channahon Park District. “It’s also a good time to get some people who may not be able to participate during the school week.” 

Channahon Park District offers a Winter Break Camp, starting Monday through Jan. 3, which will run from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. 

Registration for the camp closed Thursday, but Serruto said those interested can still register for the last three days of camp. Themes for those days are Animal Antics, Wild West and the Magic of Disney. 

The park district also has a few events after Christmas, including an “Around the World in 2 Days” cooking class on Jan. 2 and 3 where kids will learn proper cooking and kitchen safety skills while preparing cuisines from eight different countries.  

On Dec. 30, the Computer Explorers will be at the Channahon Park District teaching a stop-motion animation class to children ages 7 to 12. During the three-hour class, kids will learn to create storyboards, scripts and sets before shooting a movie starring a superhero of their choice. All students will receive copies of their movies at the end of the day.

The Three Rivers and Coal City libraries each will be sponsoring movie nights for members and nonmembers alike. The Morris Public Library will not have events over winter break and will be closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.

The Coal City Public Library will sponsor a showing of “The Hobbit” at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Mar Theater in Wilmington. A small pop and popcorn will be $4 for library district residents and $6 for nonresidents.

The Three Rivers Public Library will host a free showing of “Dennis the Menace Christmas” at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Minooka Branch Meeting Room.

“We ask that families register so we can have enough snacks and seating for everyone,” said Lisa Berger, youth services librarian for the Three Rivers Public Library.

After Christmas, Three Rivers will hold two free events: the Bibliobop Dance Party and the library Block Party.

“The Bibliobop party is a monthly event where parents can come and just be silly with their kids,” Berger said. “We have a bubble machine going and instruments out for kids to play. It’s a time when kids can come to the library and break all of the rules.”

The Block Party – from 2 to 3 p.m. Jan. 5 – will be a block building challenge where kids will build something in 15 minutes and then vote on each other’s creations. The winning creation will be put on display for a month.

“These events are free and open to the public,” Berger said.

Those kids looking to get some schoolwork done over their break can visit the Coal City library on Christmas Eve, where a librarian will help students with their homework.

“It’s not a tutoring program. We just have people there to help the kids work through their ideas,” said Rene Norris, children’s services librarian at Coal City Public Library.

If you go

Channahon Park District

“Around the World in 2 Days” – 10 a.m. to noon Jan. 2 and 3; $32 for residents/$41 for nonresidents

“Superhero Moviemaking” – 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Dec. 30; $41 for residents/$53 for nonresidents

Coal City Public Library

“The Hobbit” at Mar Theater – 3 p.m. Saturday; $4 for residents/$6 for non-residents

“Homework Helpers” – 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday; free

Three Rivers Public Library 

“Dennis the Menace Christmas” showing – 2 p.m. Sunday; free but registration is required

“Bibliobop Dance Party” – 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Jan. 3; free

“Block Party!” – 2 to 3 p.m. Jan. 5; free

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