With the Hunger Games DVD release this Saturday, your teens may have Panem fever all over again. This guest post offers just one way to celebrate the games before Catching Fire hits theaters.

On July 18, 2012, Stamford teens became tributes as they participated in a library summer event celebrating all things Hunger Games. We offered four teen summer programs this year (the others were a chocolate program, mendhi and ballroom dancing) and all were popular, but the Hunger Games event seemed to generate some special buzz among our teen volunteers and to attract some teens who aren’t regular program attendees. In the run up to the event, a number of the volunteers asked what the party would entail. When I gave them a summary of the planned events (and told them jokingly that no one was going to be killed), they said it sounded like fun, and a number of them registered to attend. An anxious Mom called the day before the program asking if it was too late for her daughter to participate. When she was told that we were happy to have her daughter join in, the mom was grateful and relieved, saying how much her daughter loved The Hunger Games and how much she was hoping to be able to come.

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We have tons of wonderful resources at our fingertips to create an awesome environment for our teens. Maybe you’re chatting with others about what they’re doing for the Hunger Games release, or you’re scanning Pinterest for new craft ideas. You hear people talking about how such-and-such program was a huge hit, and you think, “I’ve got to try that. My teens will love it.” So you spend time and money planning this sure-fire program, or maybe you’re creating your own Teen Space so they have a place in the library that’s theirs, and the time has come for the big program, the big reveal … and no one comes. Read More →

…is the first line in the book for a certain character. Do you know the character?*

Teens (and adults) in my library are all abuzz about the imminent opening of Hunger Games. Students who say they haven’t checked out a book in years are reserving the first book in Suzanne Collins’ dystopian trilogy because they want to know what all the fuss is about, and others are rereading it before the big premiere.

One such student inspired me to create a running countdown behind my desk, which she has helped me update each morning. (Mondays in particular were exciting, since the number dropped significantly from the previous week.) The countdown, in turn, gave me the idea to put on Hunger Games Trivia–and you can too!

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There were two books keeping me sane during my wild and woolly flight back from Anaheim: Hunger Games from Suzanne Collins, of Gregor the Overlander fame… and Barry Lyga’s Hero-Type, reviewed on the blog by Carlie Webber.’  Hunger Games was the one book I was determined to get at Annual, and it certainly lived up to its promise.

Hunger Games inherits the crazy premises of both Shirley Jackson’s short story “The Lottery” and Stephen King’s Bachman novella The Running Man.’  It’s an unholy marriage to be sure, but the result is compelling, addictive, and relatable for a generation raised on the Survivor television series. Read More →