National Teen Library Lock-In

Today we have another guest post from Nikki Branam, who is going to tell us about National Teen Library Lock-In Day

I am so excited to share the National Teen Lock-In with Teen Services Underground! My name is Nikki Branam and I served as co-chair of NTL in 2014 and have that role again for 2015 along with Tinna Mills. My library has participated since 2012 and the event is something that my teens look forward to every year and it’s always the first summer activity to fill up. 

NTL began in 2011 when San Diego County librarian Jennifer Lawson started working to get California libraries together as a way to attract bigger author names for summer reading visits with some collective bargaining power. The event grew through listservs and social media and became a national thing, with over 80 libraries participating last year. NTL is completely volunteer-driven and all the librarians and paraprofessionals who work together to make it happen do so in addition to all their other normal summer reading duties (because summer reading isn’t crazy hectic at all). 
A few highlights from past author  chats include Marissa Meyer, Jonathan Maberry, Marie Lu, and Colleen Houck. The author chats are still the central part of the event and a huge draw for participants, but NTL is all about the connections. I think it’s hugely valuable for teens to know that they are a part of something big, something that’s happening all over the country. The connections I’ve made as a librarian have been tremendous too – interacting with other participants through the wiki and getting to know the members of the planning committee over the past couple of years. We are so geographically spread out (from Alaska to Tennessee and everywhere in between) that we would never have even met – let alone collaborated on such a huge program – without NTL. 
Also, here are a few comments from  last year’s post-NTL survey you can include if you want:
Wonderful work by the NTL team for 2014! This year was a great experience and we are excited for future lock-ins. We’ve never had so many kids excited about future library programs as we did this year! Tons of fun!
This was our first year participating and it went well! I want to play up the national part to our teens because I don’t think they realized how BIG this is. Thank you for organizing!
The national teen lock-in gave me the ammunition I needed to get permission to hold a lock-in at my library. It was a tough sell but it went so well we will be able to participate next year! 
NTL 2015 will be held on Friday, July 31. Masquerade Madness, this year’s theme, brings together elements from the CLSP Unmask and the iRead Read to the Rhythm themes. NTL 2015 will include: 
  • Makerpalooza – A national craft contest including a paper cosplay and create-your-own-hero!
  • Gaming – Minecraft is afoot once again!
  • Photo Scavenger Hunt 
  • Minute-to-Win-It contests
  • Online Connections
And… virtual author visits! This year, we are privileged to host YA authors Jennifer Niven, S.J. Kincaid, Heather Demetrios, Jessica Brody, and Natalie Richards.  Check out this video (created by the fabulous Mel Hager) and share it with your teens and fellow librarians. 
To register for NTL and find out more details for the planned activities, please visit our wiki and sign up for the NTL mailing list. Complete instructions for all NTL activities will be available on the wiki by June 15

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