Join One of the Largest Family Game Days in History
Jennifer Peterson | October 27, 2011
On Saturday, November 12, more than 20,000 people in communities across the United States will come together in the spirit of play for the American Library Association’s fourth annual National Gaming Day @ your library. Sponsored by FamilyandPartyGames.com, the event aims to reconnect communities through their libraries around the educational, recreational, and social value of all types of games.
In the twenty-first century, libraries are about more than just books. Studies of adult gaming found that patrons who attended gaming events at the library were more open to using other library services. Also, libraries report young users who have come to the library to play games come back to use other free resources, such as homework help programs.
In 2010, more than 26,000 people participated in National Gaming Day activities at libraries across the United States and abroad. This year, participating libraries will again hold a variety of gaming activities, including board games, role playing games, an international “Epic Super Smash Bros. Brawl” tournament, a retro thirtieth anniversary Frogger contest and more.
“Playing games of all kinds at the library encourages patrons to interact socially with diverse peers, share expertise with others, and develop new strategies for gaming and learning—all while surrounded by a real world of knowledge,” said ALA president Molly Raphael. “Often video games are played at home, but playing them at the library makes it a more social experience that can be shared with their family and friends.”
But, game play is much more than simply a means for families to connect and socialize. Several studies are revealing the education benefits of gaming, including an online survey among U.S. parents from RealNetworks. In this survey, 75 percent said they “see educational benefits for their children who play casual games.”And at a time when so many families are struggling and overwhelmed financially, games are a great alternative for families to play without much pay.
“The nostalgia and positive interaction associated with board games are a perfect match for community libraries,” says Eric Poses, president of FamilyandPartyGames.com. “We look forward to a lot of laughter and memorable experiences on National Gaming Day.”
National Gaming Day @ your library is an annual initiative supported by the American Library Association and 2011 Sponsor, FamilyandPartyGames.com, who has donated 3,000 copies of its best-selling titles, including Loaded Questions, Awkward Family Photos, The Greatest Day Ever Game, and Loaded Questions Junior.
Jennifer Peterson is Public Relations Specialist/Media Relations for the ALA Public Information Office (PIO).