Niagara University is offering free, Halloween and fall-themed educational events for children and families in various Niagara County locations in October.

Funded by the United Way of Greater Niagara, and titled “Books, Balls and Blocks,” the program’s activities are designed for children between the ages of 4 months and 6 years old.

In addition to Halloween and fall-themed games, art activities, interactive stories and more, families will be offered developmental and early literacy screenings.

The events feature active parent involvement as well, which research indicates is linked to a child’s school readiness. Studies by the Harvard Family Research Project show that greater parent involvement in their child’s learning positively affects the child’s school performance, including higher academic achievement.

Pizza, refreshments and book giveaways will be provided.

Schedule of events:

Thursday, Oct. 10 | 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Niagara University Family Literacy Center (Academic Complex, Room 125)

Wednesday, Oct. 16 | Noon-2 p.m.

North Tonawanda Public Library (505 Meadow Dr., North Tonawanda, N.Y. 14120)

Thursday, Oct. 24 | 11 a.m.-1 p.m.

Niagara Falls Public Library (8728 Buffalo Ave., Niagara Falls, N.Y., 14304)

Saturday, Oct. 26 | 10 a.m.-noon

Niagara Falls Public Library (1425 Main St, Niagara Falls, N.Y., 14305)

Wednesday, Oct. 30 | 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Lockport Public Library (23 East Ave., Lockport, N.Y., 14094)

Books, Balls, and Blocks” is presented through a partnership with Help Me Grow Western New York and the Niagara County Early Child Care Quality Improvement Project, housed in Niagara University’s Rev. Joseph L. Levesque, C.M. Institute for Civic Engagement.

To register and/or obtain more information, please call 716.286.8567 or visit

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