Nebraska Libraries Report 1,000,000 Minutes of Reading

News Release

July 7, 2020

Denise Harders
Central Plains Library System

Summer reading programs are helping students become better readers

Hastings, Nebraska – Since mid-May, more than 100 Nebraska libraries have been carrying out Summer Reading Programs that have allowed patrons of all ages to log their reading progress.

As of July 7th, Readers have logged:
1,086,227 minutes read
10,457 books completed
110,272 pages read
1,928 literacy activities completed

The Nebraska Library Commission and the Nebraska Regional Library Systems have worked to engage more than 100 libraries in summer reading programs through an innovative reading app called Reader Zone. These programs consist of participants of all ages with the majority being kindergarten through 6th grade.

COVID-19 has greatly impacted libraries in every corner of the state. Libraries that typically carry out in-person events for summer reading have turned to virtual programs that allow them to remain engaged with their communities.

“We are excited to reach one million minutes and we thank all our hard-working librarians and our wonderful patrons for their dedication to literacy and reading,” said Denise Harders, Director of the Central Plains Library System. “But we’re not stopping at one million!  I invite all Nebraskans to continue reading through July and join our August Reading Challenge.”

The August Reading Challenge will run from Aug. 1st– Aug. 31st. The challenge will be to read 1,000 minutes within the month. Anyone is invited to participate in these programs through your local library.

“Seeing Nebraska readers reach 1 million minutes demonstrates that there are many dedicated public librarians and engaged families throughout the state. We are extremely proud of Nebraska and I am certain that they will double or triple their reading numbers before the end of the summer. Students will return to school in the fall with their hard-earned reading skills sharpened and ready to learn,” Jake Ball, creator of Reader Zone.

Reader Zone is web-based reading program and app that helps organizations of all kind to build and deploy meaningful reading programs. Reader Zone offers a mobile app that makes participation in reading programs simple and rewarding for readers of all ages.

Nebraska’s Regional Library Systems are four non-profit corporations governed by boards representative of libraries and citizens in the region. Systems provide access to improved library services by facilitating cooperation among all types of libraries and media centers within the counties included in each System area.  

As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, bringing together people and information. The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website,

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