Celebrate the grand opening of new space-themed library learning center

The Waukegan Public Library serves the community not just as a resource for books and media materials but also as a community center for early and continuing education, and a safe place for children to learn and play outside of school. This is most evident in the library’s Early Learning Center.

If you go

Grand Opening of the ELC

Aug. 28, 1-3 p.m.

Waukegan Public Library128 North County Street, Waukegan IL 60085 www.waukeganpl.org/early-learning-center-party/

The Early Learning Center–located on the lower level near the children’s library–isn’t your typical library kids’ space with small tables and chairs, and some puzzles and puppets. It’s part museum and part play place where kids can explore, engage and learn.

Every few years, due to the help of generous sponsors, the ELC is totally transformed around a theme. Past themes have included transportation, farms and fairy tales. The latter of which included Rapunzel’s tower which kids could climb up and slide down, a drawbridge and toadstool forest for crawlers.

This year’s theme is Blast Off! and kids will be taken on an out-of-this-world adventure through space. Some of the features kids will get to explore include a rocketship they can climb on, a moon to “land on,” a space capsule, a light table and black light constellations. There is also an exhibit of real artifacts from NASA’s Lower Earth Orbit shuttle program on the main floor of the library. This exhibit will feature a replica of the space shuttle, a seat from Endeavour and a tire from Columbia–all shuttles that have been to space.

Your family can get a look at the exciting new space on Sunday, Aug. 28 1-3 p.m. during the grand opening celebration. Aside from seeing the brand new exhibit, the Discovery Center Museum will be on hand to provide activities for children of all ages. There will be prizes, refreshments and lots of fun!

The Early Learning Center is a true Waukegan treasure giving children a fun and safe place to learn essential preschool concepts such as numbers, shapes and colors, through fun experiences and programs. Even if it’s not your home library it’s definitely worth a visit, especially if you have kids who loves learning about astronauts, rockets and space.

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