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Star Wars-themed laser tag takes over Columbine Library

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By Corinne Westeman

The Force was strong with local teens last week as they ran around the library, laser guns in hand.

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Columbine Library hosted about 30 youngsters for its Teens After Dark: Star Wars Laser Tag event last Friday, which was organized by the library’s Teen Advisory Board.

Their only hope, TAB members said, was to help local teens become active in the library, engage with their community, encourage creativity and have fun with other teens.

“We’re all geeks, and we love Star Wars,” TAB member Ellie Mayer, 15, said. “... We want (teens) to know that the library isn’t just a dusty old place for old people.”

Mayer and fellow TAB member Mae’Lonna Webb, 17, who were dressed as a Rebel and Sith, respectively, helped lead their respective teams during the skirmishes. Each round was styled as a different mission, such as finding the opponent’s hidden object or having medics to revive people, they explained.

The missions were a TAB member’s idea, said teen services librarian Brian Mosbey, who was dressed as Rebel leader Admiral Ackbar.

Mosbey added that his TAB loves pop culture and has been wanting to do a laser tag event for a while.

“I believe (Columbine Library) has one of the best TABs in Jeffco,” he said. “They are very creative, and never wanting for ideas.”

Among those building the Rebellion on hope was Ethan Moore, 11, of the Columbine area, who described how he loves frequenting the Columbine Library because he enjoys books and reads all the time.

Ethan said he’s always been a big Star Wars fan and the recent movies have revived his interest in the franchise. He decided to attend after a friend invited him.

“I thought it was a good crossover event,” he said.

With summer impending, Mosbey and the TAB members said it’s important to get teens involved in the summer reading program and the library in general.

“We want kids to come into the library and explore it,” Webb said, “and not just come to it for the events.”

Still, teen participation tends to increase over the summer, and the Teen After Dark events are especially popular, Mosbey said.

“It’s fun to be in the library when no adults are around,” he continued.

Because, in a library, teens become more powerful than one can possibly imagine.