By Kim Brawn

We’ve arrived at June. A time that can feel like the title of that recent movie “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” Everyone is itching to dive into summer – that odd mix of infinite possibilities stuck in a finite three months. At the Thompson Free Library in Dover-Foxcroft we enjoy seeing old friends and new faces arrive for the summer. Vacation means more time for family activities and, hopefully, more time to read. TFL is your go-to hub for both!

Let’s kick things off with our all-ages 8-week Summer Reading Challenge which is divided into three groups (children: birth to 11, teens: 12-17, and adult: 18-plus) – each will have their own program. Sign-up will be June 21-25. Please pick up reading logs and other items at the library.   Complete the challenge for a chance to win prizes and free books for the kids.

Our Kids Summer Program series starts at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 22 with a multigenerational session featuring bee-friendly activities for the kids with Kacey Weber from PCSWD and pollinator gardening tips for adults with UMaine Cooperative Extension. On Wednesday, June 29 at 10:30 a.m., the always popular nature educators from Chewonki explain tide pools and let children see and touch tide pool animals. Series runs each Weds. through Aug. 10.

Not to worry, our ongoing adult programs are still in session, join TFL’s Philosophy Circle on Friday, June 3 at 3:30 p.m. to discuss “The Philosophy of War.” Questions to contemplate: Is there such a thing as a just war? If so, what wars and why? How do countries justify war and sell it to their citizens? Has there ever been a society without war?  

For the arts and crafts crowd, TFL’s former director Greta Schroeder joins us in-person under the tent for “More Block Printing 101” on Thursday, June 9 at 1:30 p.m. Greta shares her skills and enthusiasm for relief printmaking. She’ll walk us through transferring a design, carving the block, and hand printing an image. You can take home your prints and carved blocks, which can be used for many creative projects including greeting cards and textiles. Supplies and a handout will be provided.

At 6 p.m. June 9, TFL’s Reading Group meets to discuss the award-winning 1993 book “A Lesson Before Dying” by Ernest J. Gaines. From Publishers Weekly, “In this restrained but eloquent narrative, the author of The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman again addresses some of the major issues or race and identity in our time. . . Gaines invests the story with emotional power and universal resonance.” Copies are available at the library.

What would summertime be without music? No need to contemplate that thanks to TFL’s summer concert lineup. First up, folk singer Bill Berlinghoff brings his rich, flexible baritone accompanied by banjo and guitar back to TFL on Thursday, June 16 at 6 p.m. His diverse songbook includes Tennessee mountain music, 1960s folk songs, singalongs, and thoughtful, whimsical originals. His website describes it as “Acoustic music in the Pete Seeger tradition.”

The Garden in a Box learning series continues Wednesday, June 22 at 6 p.m. with “When to Harvest your Garden Vegetables.” Get useful, specific information and resources as Piscataquis Regional Food Center and UMaine Cooperative Extension team up again to share tips and tricks to know when and how to harvest various veggies. 

“Whoopie!” it’s time for another Ten Cent Book Sale (June 23-25) to coincide with the Maine Whoopie Pie Festival and offer sizzling deals just as summer heats up. Bring your spare change and dollar bills to the downstairs meeting room a.k.a. The Basement, Thursday 12-6 p.m., Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

As you enter TFL, you’ll be greeted by a new display featuring books set in Maine. It’s always interesting to see places you know through someone else’s eyes and experiences, giving a sense of familiarity as well as novelty. 

Which is kind of like summer at the library. New meets old and everything in between. Besides attending the awesome programs, be sure to stock up on beach-porch-lawn-couch-bed-hammock (is that just a TV thing?) reads. TFL has an enviable array of new releases and gems you may have missed. We’re your go-to hub as summer unfurls.
TFL is open Tuesday and Thursday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Wednesday and Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Visit our website, Facebook page, or contact us at or 207-564-3350. Find us on Instagram @tf_library. Weather permitting most programs will be held under the event tent. Programs are free and open to the public. When possible, we live-stream our programs via Facebook and later make available on our YouTube channel (