The Battle of Tumwater Library

by Molly Gilmore for OLY ARTS

What happens in the library after the lights go out? Friday night at Tumwater Timberland Library, the answer sounds like something out of a fantasy novel: The library will become a battlefield, with intrepid teens forming teams to play capture the flag—or in this case, capture the glow wand—and hide and seek.

At the second Battle of Tumwater Library, students in grades 6-12 will draw glow sticks to choose teams and then practice the fine art of subterfuge, sneaking through the stacks while attempting to find and capture the other team’s hidden wand.

Last year, the three-hour event turned into an opportunity for teens from all over the South Sound to make new friends, said youth services librarian Holly Guthrie. About 20 students attended last year. “We saw a lot of teens who aren’t necessarily regulars at the library, and we got to watch some of them really bond over hiding their flag and keeping it away from the other team,” Guthrie said. “It was really fun to see the camaraderie. Some of them were complete strangers at the beginning of the night, and by the end of the night, they were trading phone numbers or adding each other on social media.”

The battle will be set to music, played over the library’s public-address system, and there’ll be snacks and beverages. Guthrie and three colleagues will supervise the action.

If this is unconventional stuff for a library, at least there is one rule: “No running,” Guthrie said.

What: The Battle of Tumwater Library

Where: Tumwater Timberland Library,
7023 New Market St. SW, Tumwater

When: 7-10 p.m. Friday, March 31

How much: free

Get tickets: 360-943-7790 | Tumwater Library

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