At 10, Makkayla Fonseca has a lofty goal for herself — she wants to read all of the books in the world.
“Because I want to be smart,” Fonseca said Saturday at Peter Piper Pizza during a celebration of the end of the Weslaco public library’s summer reading program.
Fonseca enjoys books full of action and spies. She enjoys Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys and Junie B. Jones. Fonseca likes that Drew is good to her friends, telling one that “she’s the prettiest in the whole world.”
Fonseca was one of hundreds of children to join the party. Library Director Arnoldo Becho said he wanted at least 250 people to show up, and he was happy to see more than 300. Still, he said, there were fewer people than last year, when the celebration was held at the park.
“We made sure that all the kids that attended this year actually read books. Last year we weren’t very strict with it, but this year we wanted to make reading a priority,” Becho said. “We put an emphasis less on numbers this summer and more on quality. The numbers have always been there.”
Saturday, children who read at least five books over the summer enjoyed free video games, pizza and prizes. Everyone received a free book and had a chance to earn more by coloring or doing other bonus activities.
Children also painted their hands to place a handprint on two white canvases. The do-it-yourself art will be hung on the library wall as reminder to the children of what they were a part of.
Over the summer, Becho said, about 1,000 children read more than 4,000 books.
Fonseca did her part, having read an estimated 36 herself.