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Service Alert

The Anacostia Library will be closed from Monday, July 22 - Sunday, Aug. 4 for a scheduled facilities project. Learn more on the Anacostia Library page.

Discover Summer: Go, Find, Explore with an illustration of an open book, the Washington Monument and the Capital Building against the sun

You are invited to Discover Summer with DC Public Library from June 3 - Aug. 31. Discover Summer is an all-ages city-wide celebration of reading and learning. With Discover Summer you will enjoy great reads, fun events and activities that encourage you to explore your neighborhood and D.C. Everything you need to Discover Summer can be found at your neighborhood library!

Know Your Power Teen Arts Contest

A charcoal drawing of a middle aged man sleeping on a couch

Art is a powerful tool to share social messages and inspire change. Visual artists like Shepard Fairey, musicians like Beyonce and authors like Mira Jacob have used their creative voices to speak truth to power and raise awareness of the important issues facing us today. Pepco, the DC Public Library Foundation and DC Public Library invite you to find your power and use it to creatively address a topic that is important to you. What change would you like to see in the world? We are calling on youth between the ages of 13 - 19 to use their creative voice to make a difference. 

Between May 28 and Aug. 9, submit an original work of writing, photography, film, visual art, or music that expresses your feelings on a social issue that matters to you.  We’re looking for pieces that are not only well-crafted but have a strong voice and perspective on a subject pertaining to civic engagement.

Winners will be selected in the categories of Visual Art, Writing, Music, and Film & Photography. Entries will be judged by representatives from Pepco and D.C. Public Library's Teen Council.

Learn more and Submit Your Piece of Art to the Know Your Power Teen Art Contest

Discover Summer Events

Know Your Power Party. Make Art, Make Change.

Know Your Power Party 

Saturday, June 8, 1 p.m., Southwest Library

Teens are invited to a celebration of arts and activism with food, art activities, creative writing, music and performers from Words, Beats, and Life, an open mic, prizes, info and activities from local organizations like Writopia Lab, Artechouse, and the National Gallery of Art, and a special author talk from Politics and Prose. This program is made possible by the DC Public Library Foundation and Pepco.

Author Talk featuring Tomi Adeyemi, June 26, 7 p.m., MLK Library

Children of Anguish and Anarchy with Tomi Adeyemi

Wednesday, June 26, 7 p.m. | Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library

DC Public Library is excited to host #1 New York Times bestselling author, Tomi Ademeyi, for her book Children of Anguish & Anarchy, the highly anticipated and final book in the trilogy. One of the most exciting books of the summer, and we're hosting the author, right here in DC at the Martin Luther King Jr. Library downtown. Grab your teens & come out for a thrilling evening!

Teen writing on a computer at the library

Know Your Power Residency with Imagination Stage

Thursdays at 4 p.m., Lamond Riggs/Lillian J. Huff Library

Unleash your creative talents in this workshop series with Imagination Stage. By the end of the program series, teens will have created an original work of art, writing, or music based on an issue they are passionate about that they can submit to the Know Your Power civic engagement arts contest. Teaching artists from Imagination Stage will help teens brainstorm ideas through a variety of creative exercises and explore different types of genres. At the last session, youth will showcase their work in a celebratory public event at the library.

Teens reading at the MLK Library

Know Your Power with Project Create

Multiple Dates, Multiple Locations

Are you looking for a space to get your creative juices flowing? Come join a workshop to learn from brilliant teaching artists as they share their expertise in a variety of artistic disciplines as you practice your creative skills and bring your beautiful ideas to life! 

Youth Poet Laureate Performing at a microphone

Youth Poet Laureate Tour

Multiple Dates, Multiple Locations

Teens are invited to hear spoken word poetry performed by one of the DMV’s Youth Poet Laureates, then write poetry of their own in a free workshop. 

See All Upcoming Know Your Power Events

See All Upcoming Events for Teens

Download Your Teen Discover Summer Companion Guide


Teen Companion Guide Cover

Looking for more fun ways to Discover Summer? Stop by your neighborhood library to pick up this year's companion guide or download the pdf to print from home!

2024 Teen English Companion Guide

2024 Teen Chinese Companion Guide

2024 Teen Amharic Companion Guide

2024 Teen Spanish Companion Guide


Recommended Reads

Summer break is a great time to read for fun and build a healthy reading habit. Creating a reading habit is easy, you just have to read for 20 minutes a day! To get you started, DC Public Schools and DC Public Library have selected some great reads by age range below.

Discover Summer Reading Guide

Grade 6 - Grade 8

Mexikid A Graphic Memoir


Pedro Martin


Two Degrees

Aisha Saeed, Huda Al-Marashi, Jamila Thompkins-Bigelow and S.K. Ali

Grades 9 - 12