Little bookworms design library cards

9-year-old rejoices in contest victory

9 year-old Miles Hymes couldn’t quite process that close to 10,000 library cards with his design are now available at the Hoboken Public Library.
“I’m happy,” he said, with vanilla cake in hand. “I like to draw animals, cartoons, and sometimes I like to look at stuff and try to draw it.”
The library kicked off the contest last September during national Library Card Sign-up Month and announced the winner during a party on Friday, Jan. 22. Children ate cake, read books with their parents and participated in a story time.
Of the 29 entries of children between 5 and 12 years old, Miles, a fourth grader who lives in Hoboken, claimed victory with a simple yet eye-catching design. His mother, Fatou, and father, Charles, were not surprised by his triumph, as they know Miles to do wonders with Legos.

“We will keep Miles’ card for many years to come.” – Sharlene Edwards
“We thought it would be a fun way to get kids excited about getting a library card for the first time,” said Sharlene Edwards, the children’s librarian. “We promoted the design contest at local ‘Back to School’ nights and received a lot of positive feedback.”
Edwards thought up the contest as a way to generate excitement over reading and taking advantage of all the resources of the local public library.
“I loved Sharlene’s idea,” said Director of the Hoboken Public Library, Lina Podles. “In 20 years, Miles will look back on this with pride.”
The library’s children section, complete with computers and a selection of movies, surely served as inspiration for the young Picassos to draw inspiration from.
Last year some of the most popular books, according to library records, include “Let’s Go for a Drive!” and “The Pigeon Finds a Hotdog!” by Mo Willems, and Jeff Kinney’s “Diary of a Wimpy Kid.”
“We will keep Miles’ card for many years to come,” said Edwards. “We’re not sure we’ll do the contest again next year, but we’re definitely doing something.”

Steven Rodas can be reached at

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