Imagine Your Story—Summer Reading 2020 

Fairy tales, myths and folklore—the world is full of stories!

Make your own story more exciting by reading and enjoying fun activities all summer long.    

We’re encouraging everyone to take our free Summer Reading Challenge, running from May 22-Aug. 8. We have separate tracks for Babies & Toddlers (ages up to 3), Kids (ages 0-13), Teens (ages 10-18) and Adults (age 18 & up).  

You don’t have to be a CADL member—the challenge is open to everyone! Membership is free to residents and offers many valuable perks, however, so be sure to check them out while you’re here. You can sign up right here, without visiting a branch. 

Reading during the summer is especially important for kids. Research shows that a three-month break from school can create something called the “summer slide”--a gap in reading scores that can have long-term effects. 

Read more about summer slide here.

Our challenge makes it fun and easy to keep reading all summer long. Plus you can earn prizes and chances to win drawing prizes. This year’s grand prize for kids is a family getaway to the Bavarian Inn Waterpark in Frankenmuth, while the teen prize is a four-pack of tickets to the Marvel Universe of Super Heroes Exhibit at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn.  

This year’s reading challenge is made possible by the generous support of these donors: Michigan State University Federal Credit Union, Capital Area Transportation AuthorityWILX 10WFMK, WITLLansing LaunchImpression 5 Science Center and Biggby Coffee


  1. Sign up here at Beanstack. If you don’t already have a Beanstack account you will need to create one now. This is where you will log yours or your child’s reading time and activities.  
  2. Select which reading challenge is best for you (you can only choose one).  
  3. Start logging points by reading and completing the activities listed in your challenge. For each level you complete, you will earn a prize and/or a chance to win drawing prizes.   

Please note: Prizes are now available. Schedule pickup through our MyTime service. All prizes are subject to change, including grand prizes. Substitutions would be of similar value. 


Don’t let overdue fines stop you from using the library! Kids and teens who reach the second level in our Summer Reading Challenge will earn a $5 coupon they can use to help pay their fine. Coupons will be issued once our branches reopen.


Now more than ever it’s important to engage in activities that enrich and entertain. While we won’t be providing in-branch events this summer, you can count on us for fun activities and online events. Find some examples below, and be sure to check out our virtual Summer Reading Challenge guide!

Online Events (All ages) 

Come to a virtual storytime, watch a magic show or other performances, try an online escape room challenge and much more. Find details for all of our free activities and online events here.  

Imagine Your Story Poetry & Art Project (Ages up to 18) 

Create an original poem or illustration, on any subject you like. We will post these at our branches and/or social media sites. No judging or prizes involved—just share your work for others to enjoy! Find submission guidelines here.  

Win a Digital Device (Ages up to 18) 

CADL is committed to helping close the “digital divide” for local kids and teens challenged by online educational requirements. How would having a digital device impact your learning or your creative interests? Kids and teens who complete all levels of our Summer Reading Challenge are eligible to enter a contest for devices such as computers, iPads, Chromebooks and other tech gear (a minimum of 20 devices). Write or draw your answer (or use a combination) to tell us “what a digital device would mean to me.” You must use an official entry form—find the form and rules here.

Shapes Tell a Story (Families) 

Each Monday from June 15-Aug. 3, we will announce a different shape for you to find in your home, community, or in nature. Take a picture of the shape and share it with us via social media. Everyone who shares a picture by 5 p.m. each Friday will be entered to win that week's prize. Find details here

Community Scavenger Hunts (Families) 

From May 22-Aug. 8, follow the picture clues on our game sheet to identify outdoor items or landmarks in some of our communities. Once completed, return your game sheet to the appropriate CADL branch to be entered into prize drawings. Pick up a game sheet at one of the branches listed below (check here for information about open dates), or print one out here: