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2021 Summer Reading Challenge

It’s the Red Balloon Bookshop 2021 Summer Reading Challenge!


Red Balloon Summer Reading Recommendations Toes in the Sand, Book in Your Hand!


Stop by the store to pick up a summer reading worksheet and a special starting prize (or print a copy of the PDF at home)!

Summer Reading Rules
As you read, fill in each square with the title of a book that matches the category. Each box should have a different title, so if a book matches multiple categories, just pick which one you want to use it for.

When you complete a bingo, stop by the store sto show us your worksheet and pick up your prizes! A bingo counts as any four consecutive squares (diagonals count). You can also wait to turn in your bingo sheet until you have completed all of the challenges, including the blackout.

The Summer Reading Challenge ends on August 20th, 2021. All bingo sheets must be turned in by that date to be eligible for prizes.


Summer Reading Prizes
Bingo #1: A mini prize pack from Grand Avenue businesses!

Bingo #2: A little prize pack from Grand Avenue businesses!

Blackout: $5 Red Balloon gift card, a pack of the winning bookmarks, and a raffle entry for fancier prizes from Grand Avenue businesses!


Participating Grand Avenue businesses include:

Mischief Toy Store Bread & Chocolate Cooks of Crocus Hill

Wet Paint Grand Ole Creamery

The Odd Couple Team A. Johnson & Sons Florist Shish


Irish on Grand Nothing Bundt Cakes

Show these stores your support and thank them for being a part of Summer Reading! Each store's logo links to its website.


Frequently Asked Questions

How do I choose which books to read?
We encourage finding books by Black authors or by other authors of color; otherwise it’s up to you! Having trouble with a particular category or age group? We have ideas!

Who can participate in the reading challenge?
Anyone (though only kids and teens will get prizes)! If you’re reading independently, boxes should be filled in with books you’ve ready by yourself. If you’re still learning to read, fill in boxes with books you’ve read with a family member or friend. 

Should books be fiction or nonfiction?
All categories can be filled by either except “read a biography or autobiography”!

What counts as a Red Balloon recommendation?
Any of the books in either of our summer reading catalogs! Choose from books from Toes in the Sand, Book in Your Hand or the Red Balloon Summer Recommendations!

Do audiobooks count? What about graphic novels?
Yes and yes! Books can be in any format to qualify, as long as they match the other criteria. We recommend for audiobooks that support indie bookstores like us!

Can I use the same book for multiple boxes?
Nope! The goal is to read lots of books you might not read otherwise, so each box needs to be filled with its own book title.

I have more questions!
You can contact us at and we'll get back to you with answers as soon as we can.