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Welcome to the June edition of the Van Meter Public Library Newsletter!

This month we share all the amazing events and activities we have planned for kids, tweens, and families during our Summer Reading Program, Read Beyond the Beaten Path!

We look forward to seeing you at the library!


Introducing TeenBookCloud

TeenBookCloud offers more than 1,400 titles for tweens and teens this summer. New graphic novels, must read YA/Teen titles, middle school fiction, enhanced ebooks, AP English/ Classics, common core portals, audiobooks, videos, and more.

No account, username, or password required. Access the VMPL website for a direct link to our TeenBookCloud portal.

A Word From Our Director

The first focus area of the 2020-2025 VMPL Strategic Plan is, “Organizational Health.”

A healthy organization has

  • a clear understanding of their purpose and mission
  • the people and resources to fulfill their purpose
  • partnerships with organizations that share their values
  • a plan that outlines the steps necessary to achieve their mission.

The primary challenge for VMPL, at this time, is to ensure that we have the capacity to grow with the community we serve.

Innovative Staff

The first goal is for the library to have people in leadership positions, such as Director and Board members, who are dedicated to bringing exceptional library services to Van Meter. This means innovative, educated, experienced staff members who have a service-oriented attitude. It means a commitment to continuing education for both staff and Board members.  

Adequate Funding

The Van Meter Public Library Foundation will be taking the lead in raising funds for a new building. In the meantime, the Library staff will be focusing on offering a slate of programs and services that meet the needs of our growing community. The City budgeted a generous $105,000 for the library’s fiscal year that begins July 1, 2022. This will help us offer additional programs for children and teens and buy new materials. 

Planning Ahead

The third and final goal for “organizational health” is to maintain a planning process that supports our efforts to provide exceptional library services, including a new library building. Regularly reviewing and updating our strategic plan will help us keep our eyes on the ball.

I'll be discussing our second focus area, Expanded Programs and Resources, next month.

~ Nancy Studebaker-Barringer

Van Meter Public Library Director

Did You Know?

You can borrow DVDs from the library! Not only is our collection of DVDs and Blu-Rays growing, you can also borrow movies and television shows using the Interlibrary Loan Program. You have access to blockbusters, foreign films, musicals, classics, and more from public libraries and universities throughout Iowa.

Summer Reading Program 2022

Raccoon River Days Family Festival, Friday June 3rd from 6-9pm

Friday night the library will have several tables set up at the American Legion Hall, offering fun activities all evening long.

The craft tables will be offering make-your-own slap bracelets, kaleidoscopes, glowsticks, superhero masks, and marshmallow shooters.

The signup table will have all the information you need to sign up for all our Summer Reading Programs and start earning rewards instantly.

Participants of all ages are welcome to help us color in a twelve foot vinyl banner depicting the traditions and visions of Van Meter. This banner will be displayed along the chain link fence in front of the library throughout the summer months.

Raccoon River Days weekend and our Summer Reading Program Kick-Off have been made possible by the Van Meter Community Development Corporation (VMCDC) and generous sponsors of the Raccoon River Days. We thank them for their support!

Summer Reading Calendar of Events


Children Summer Reading Program

Ages 2-12    Weekly Events!

Summer Laugh and Learn

Wednesday Nights 5:30-6:30pm

June 8th: Optical Illusions

June 15th: Father's Day

June 22nd: One Word: Plastics

June 29th: KaBoom! Little Explosions

July 6th: Succulents

July 13th: Chemistry/Art Mashup

July 20th: Board Games

July 27th: Duct Tape Crafts

Summer Toddler Time

Monday Nights 5:30-6:30pm

Wednesday Morning 8:30-10:30am

June 6th and 8th: Camping

June 13th and 15th: Zoo

June 20th and 22nd: Art Museum

June 27th and 29th: Grandma's House

No Toddler Time Week of July 4th

July 11th and13th: Planes

July 18th and 20th: Boats

July 25th and 27th: Trains

Monday Middle School Matinees

Movies at the library every Monday afternoon throughout the summer from 2pm- 4:30pm. Participants will be able to choose between two titles. Snacks provided, please bring your own water bottle.

Saturday Morning Art for Young Artists

Each Saturday in July Nancy will share a story about a famous artist and their signature style. Participants will then create their own masterpiece to take home!

July 9th: Pop Art- Roy Lichtenstein

July 16th: Modern Flowers- Georgia O'Keefe

July 23rd: Abstract Expressionism- Jackson Pollack

July 30th: Drawing with Scissors- Henri Matisse


Tween Summer Reading Program

Ages 12-16       Weekly Events!

June 6th - July 28th

Word of the Week:

Participants will find a Word and Definition posted in our library each week. Those who collect all 8 will be eligible for a free book.

Book Reviews

Share your opinions about the books you read! With parental permission, participants can download our image template to create Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp memes. The review will be taped to the book and displayed in the Teen section. Get a raffle ticket for each review submitted!

Teen Takeover Thursdays- Weekly!

Join Katrina Thursday nights from 6pm to 8pm for teen focused crafts, games, movies, and fun.

Music and snacks provided; bring your own water bottle.

Each event you attend will get you a badge- collect three to win a free book, collect all 8 for two books!

June 9th: Wooden Bracelets

June 16th: Cult Classic Movie Night

June 23rd: Create A Board Game

June 30th: Soap Carving

July 7th: Adventure Movie Night

July 14th: Mandala Bottle Painting

July 21st: Poetry Slam & Open Mic

July 28th: End of Summer Teen Bash

Coming Soon: Beanstack!

This summer we will be offering Beanstack challenges for teens! Track your reading, write reviews, earn badges, and enter our raffle drawings with several $30 Certificates to spend on books to take home!

Parent/ Tween Book Club- Monthly

2nd Tuesday Nights 7pm

Parents and guardians connect with their tweens by reading the same story and sharing insights with the group.

June 14: View from Saturday

July 12: Jake & Lily

August 9: Power of Lucky

"Like" our Facebook page for the full Summer Reading Program Schedule of Events

Community Resources


Van Meter City Hall

310 Mill Street

PO Box 160

Phone: (515) 996-2644



Van Meter Public Safety

Director of Public Safety: (515) 202-4154

Sheriff’s Dispatch: (515) 993-4567

Emergency: 911


Van Meter Community Development Corporation


New Website! www.vanmeterlife.com

Van Meter Public Library

Phone: (515) 996-2435

505 Grant Street

PO Box 160

Van Meter, IA 50261

Website: van.meter.ia.lib.us

Email: library@vanmeteria.gov