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Escape the Wicked Witch and look out for the big bad wolf at the library
Wicked Witch
The Turlock Library will host a “Wizard of Oz” themed escape room activity on Aug. 9 and 10 (Photo contributed).

Local branches of the Stanislaus County Library offer a number of events in August to get creative juices flowing and children ready to start a new school year.


August events at the Turlock Library will start with a meeting of the Turlock Teens Talk Books at 3 p.m. Saturday. Teens are invited to join fellow bibliophiles for a discussion about their newest read.

The next STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) Works session will be held at 4 p.m. Aug. 6.  After a reading of “The True Story of the Three Little Pigs” by A. Wolf as told to Jon Scieszka, participants will have an opportunity to work independently, or in teams, to build their own houses out of uncooked spaghetti and marshmallows. The houses will then be tested to see which can withstand the huff and puff of the wolf.  STEAM Works is designed for children in kindergarten and older; children 4 and under must have direct adult supervision.

Adults looking for a way to unwind and have some fun can come by the library from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Aug. 7 for coloring. Colored pencils, crayons, and a variety of artistic designs will be available.

The Turlock Library Book Club will meet at 10:30 a.m. Aug. 7. This month's selection is “Mudbound,” by Hillary Jordan. In 1946, Laura McAllan tries to adjust after moving with her husband and two children to an isolated cotton farm in the Mississippi Delta. A limited number of copies are available at the Turlock Library. For more information, call the library at 209-664-8100.

All are invited to attend the monthly board meeting of the Friends of the Turlock Public Library at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 7. Meetings are held the first Wednesday of the month in the library.

The Mystery Lovers Book Club will meet at 10:30 a.m. Aug. 9. This month's selection is “The Great Reckoning,” by Louise Penny. When an intricate old map is found stuffed into the walls of the bistro in Three Pines, it at first seems no more than a curiosity. But the closer the villagers look, the stranger it becomes. Given to Armand Gamache as a gift the first day of his new job, the map eventually leads him to shattering secrets. To an old friend and older adversary. It leads the former Chief of Homicide for the Surete du Quebec to places even he is afraid to go. But must. And there he finds four young cadets in the Surete academy, and a dead professor. And, with the body, a copy of the old, odd map. Everywhere Gamache turns, he sees Amelia Choquet, one of the cadets. Tattooed and pierced. Guarded and angry. Amelia is more likely to be found on the other side of a police line-up. And yet she is in the academy. A protegee of the murdered professor. The Mystery Lovers Book Club meets at the Turlock Library on the second Friday of each month. For more information, call the library at 209-664-8100.

The Wicked Witch of the West has locked you in her castle workroom. Can you escape before time runs out? This library escape room event is designed for ages 8 and up. Reservations are required and space is limited. Call 209-664-8100 to reserve a place at one of the event times: 1:30 p.m. or 3 p.m. Aug. 9 and 10:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m. on Aug. 10.

All ages are welcome to get creative with painting rocks at 4 p.m. Aug. 13. Children 4 and under must have direct adult supervision.

The Turlock Library will host a sensory play session at 10 a.m. Aug. 14. Sensory play is self-guided play that allows young children to explore different textures and activities.  Designed for children ages 5 and younger. Each child must be directly supervised by a parent or adult guardian. 

The Turlock Teen Advisory Board will meet at 4 p.m. Aug. 14. The board provides input on what kinds of programs and activities teens would like the library to provide.  During the hour-long meeting, participants brainstorm and discuss ideas for library activities and services for teens in Turlock. Community service hours are earned by attending meetings and helping with projects. 

Visitors to the library can have some fun and learn how to easily save money while shopping at a coupon class with the Modesto Money Mavens being held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 17.

Children can create unique art by searching their scribbles for objects or shapes at the next Art Lab session at 4 p.m. Aug. 20. Do you see a bird, or maybe a whale? Use colored pencils to outline and color shapes for a picture that will really stand out.  All ages welcome; children 4 and under must have direct adult supervision.

Teens can learn basic sewing skills and how to use a sewing machine to create their own unique gift bag from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 21. All materials will be supplied.  This program is for ages 12 through 18.  Space is limited, however, so call 209-664-8100 to reserve a spot. This event is sponsored by Friends of the Turlock Public Library.

Children will have the opportunity to build LEGO displays for the library using the library’s LEGO and LEGO DUPLO blocks at 4 p.m. Aug. 27. LEGO play helps children develop fine motor skills. Children under 4 are welcome, but must have direct parental supervision.

Adults can learn how to create a unique bracelet that fits their style and personality at 1 p.m. Aug. 28.

The Turlock Library is located at 550 Minaret Ave. For more information on Turlock Library programs, call 209-664-8100.



The Denair Library will start its August events with a Shark Week Scavenger Hunt on Aug. 1. Visitors can search for the different species of shark around the library to win a fin-tastic prize.

The library will host two Drawing Club meetings in August — from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 6 and 20. Participants will learn how to draw Manga art. All materials are provided.

Children will have the opportunity to build LEGO displays for the library using the library’s LEGO and LEGO DUPLO blocks from noon to 6 p.m. every Wednesday in August. LEGO play helps children develop fine motor skills. Children under 4 are welcome, but must have direct parental supervision.

The library will host an Ocean Day at 4 p.m. Aug. 8. Different ocean themed crafts will be available. Create a fish with vivid scales out of a paper plate and colorful paper. An oceanic agamograph will also be available for older crafters to make a dual image picture. All materials provided.

The Denair Library will host its Chess Club from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 13 and 27. Participants should bring their own chess boards and pieces for a nice, friendly game of chess. Chess puzzles will also be available to solve. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, all are welcome. These will be unranked, fun games of chess. Come by and meet fellow players, and maybe even make a new friend.

There will be three craft days in August. The first, at 4 p.m. Aug. 15, will allow participants to make their own boat out of several corks, a kabob skewer and a custom sail. All craft supplies needed will be available. Crafters can use a variety of rubber stamps to create a scene or picture of their choice at 4 p.m. Aug. 22. Hot air balloons are the theme of the craft day at 4 p.m. Aug. 29. Participants can make their own hot air balloon craft out of a printed template and colorful strips of paper which create the actual balloon.

The Denair Library is located at 4801 Kersey Rd. For more information on Denair Library programs, call 209-634-1283.



The Keyes Library will hold three events in August.

Kids can use their creativity to decorate their very own pencil to be ready to take on the new school year from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Aug. 8. Pencils will be provided.

Adults can relax and let their artistic side come out from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 16 as they paint away using fake roses and other flowers as their tool.

Saving money is always great, especially when there is always loose change lying around. Kids will decorate a small water bottle that will eventually be their very own personal piggy bank from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Aug. 22. All supplies will be provided.

The Keyes Library is located at 4420 Maud Ave. in Keyes. For more information about programs at the Keyes Library, call 209-664-8000.