We are in the middle of a board game renaissance and I know that board games and libraries should go together like peanut butter butter and chocolate. But I have been striking out in my attempts to have a truly successful board game program. My first attempt at a board game program was aimed at teens. This time I tried to cast a wider net by marketing it as a family game night.
A game night costs virtually nothing as I have a large personal collection of games that I brought to the library for participants to choose from. I have some cooperative games like Forbidden Desert and Pandemic. I have deck-building games like Dominion. I have 2-player games like Morels and HIVE. I have games that support a large number of players like PIT (9) and Tsuro (8). I have Takenoko and Ticket to Ride and Catan and Guillotine and Munchkin. It honestly took more time for me to move all the games into the program room than to play the games.
How can you not want to play a board game with this cute little panda?
The games I remember the kids playing were: Guess Who, Connect 4, Spot it, and PIT (at my insistence)
In the future I need to consider:
1. I did have two families show up and I should consider 6 participants a success. The chess club often gets 2-5 players and no one complains about that, so maybe I am just being too hard on myself.
2. Thursday night programs are not as consistent as Monday programs so I can’t expect Monday stats on a Thursday unless we start doing things every Thursday.
3. While a lot of my games are cool, many are too complex or not familiar for the 1st-3rd grade kids that tend to come to programs. I can introduce new games but I think I need to earn their trust with games they recognize like Candyland and Chutes and Ladders first.