The Adams County Public Library FunFest 2023 was held on Friday in the Gettysburg Rec Park. The FunFest serves as the kickoff of SummerQuest, the library’s summer learning program.
SummerQuest attempts to deal with the seemingly intractable “summer learning loss” that affects many school-age children. The SummerQuest program encourages children to take advantage of library programs, including leisure reading and other activities.
Educational research finds that summer learning loss is serious and widespread. One study found that the average student lost 17-34% of the prior year’s learning and that students who suffered learning loss one summer were more likely to experience it again in future summers. Another study concluded that gaps between lower and higher-income students increased over the summer, as middle and upper income tended to have more access to reading resources.
With its annual crowd of several thousand kids and their parents, the FunFest is also an opportunity for other vendors offering summertime programs for students to hit their market and organizations such as the YWCA, Girl Scouts, Headstart, VIDA Charter School, the Arts Council, and various summer camp operators displayed their wares. Other nonprofits not specifically engaged in activities for kids – Destination Gettysburg, SCCAP’s Gleaning program)
Every exhibitor provided an activity for children.
The festival included an all-female DJ crew playing current hits, face painting, and a wealth of opportunities to sample Adams County’s rich population of food trucks.
Based on the FunFest, it appears that Adams County kids will have plenty of beneficial activities this summer – and it seems they’re in a mood to capitalize on these opportunities