Kids club event Oct. 31 helps kick off book drive for public libraries

It’s boos and bouquets Oct. 31 when we kick off our annual children’s book drive with a kids club event.

croppedKid's Club 10-31

Children ages 5 to 12 are asked to bring a new children’s book as the price of admission. Participants will get to make a fall arrangement (photo) and will receive a balloon.

Because the event coincides with Halloween, participants are encouraged to wear their trick-or-treat costumes.

Time slots are available at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Registration is required by calling your nearest Royer’s store.

Royer’s “Bouquets for Books” book drive benefits area public libraries. Marking its 10th year in 2015, the event has collected nearly 14,000 books for the libraries.

We’ve updated our ‘Power of Pink’ arrangement to continue breast cancer awareness efforts

Royer’s fall catalog will arrive in mailboxes just as October ushers in National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

croppedPower of Pink (2015)

The catalog includes a new version of our “Power of Pink” arrangement, which is offered year-round to raise money for breast cancer awareness.

The new arrangement features hydrangea and roses in a swirled glass vase and measures 12 inches high and 11 inches wide. It is priced at $56.99 and can be ordered online, over the phone or in-store.

With each arrangement sold, we earmark $10 for breast cancer organizations. In 2015, that meant $4,000 shared equally by two nonprofits, the Lebanon-based Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition and the Middletown-based Feel Your Boobies Foundation.

In the United States, approximately 40,290 women are expected to die from breast cancer in 2015, according to However, death rates have been decreasing since 1989 as a result of treatment advances, earlier detection through screening, and increased awareness.

2015 ‘Bouquets for Books’ library wish lists

Our annual children’s book drive — “Bouquets for Books” — marks its 10th year in 2015.

It benefits the library systems in Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon and York counties and the independent Hershey Public Library.

To ensure that the libraries receive the books they need the most, they have provided these wish lists:

Board books:
Dada by Fallon Ball by Mary Sullivan
Rhymoceroes by Janik Coat
Peep and Ducky by David Martin

Picture books:
Dr. Seuss picture books
Locomotive by Brian Floca
Viva Frida by Yuyi Morales
Appleblossom the Possum by Holly Sloan
Stick and Stone by Beth Ferry and Tom Lichtenheld
Interstellar Cinderella by Deborah Underwood and Meg Hunt
Orion and the dark by Emma Yarlett
I Yam a Donkey by Cece Bell
When Otis Courted Mama by Kathi Appelt and Jill McElmurry
Miss Hazeltine’s Home for Shy and Fearful Cats by Alicia Potter and Birgitta Sif
Billy’s Booger by William Joyce and Moonbot
Ballet Cat the Totally Secret Secret by Bob Shea
The Pennsylvania Dutch Night Before Christmas by Chet Williamson
The Talking Eggs by Robert San Souci and Jerry Pinkney

Echo by Pam Munoz Ryan
The Case of the Missing Moonstone by Jordan Stratford and Kelly Murphy
Dear Hank Williams by Kimberly Willis Holt
Gone Crazy in Alabama by Rita Williams-Garcia
Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods by Rick Riordan
Percy Jackson’s Greek Heroes by Rick Riordan

Young adult books: 
The Heir by Kiera Cass
Mechanica by Cornwell
A Court of Thorn and Roses by Sarah Maas
More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera
The Winner’s Curse by Rutkoski
The Winner’s Crime by Rutkoski
Undertow by Michael Buckley
The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B by Teresa Toten

Any titles in these series:
A to Z Mysteries
Amelia Bedelia
Bailey School Kids
Beginner Reader books such as I Can Read, Rookie Readers
Berenstain Bears
Curious George
Clifford the Big Red Dog
Dora or Diego
Elephant and Piggie
Fancy Nancy
Geronimo Stilton
I Spy
My Weird School
Pete the Cat
Star Wars early readers (especially Lego ones)
Thomas the Tank Engine

Books by these authors/illustrators:
Sandra Boynton
Margaret Wise Brown
Eric Carle (especially paperbacks)
Dr. Seuss
Ed Emberley (esp. Go Away, Big Green Monster!)
Mo Willems

Picture books:
I Stink/I’m Dirty and/or I’m Mighty by Kate McMullan and Jim McMullan
The Long, Long Line by Tomoko Ohmura
Maisy’s Bedtime by Lucy Cousins
Maisy Cleans Up by Lucy Cousins
Simpson’s Sheep Won’t Go to Sleep! by Bruce Arant
The Snatchabook by Helen Docherty
This is the Farmer by Nancy Tafuri

Anything written by:
Mo Willems
Eric Carle
Dr. Seuss
Rosemary Wells
Sandra Boynton
Lucy Cousins
Rick Riordan
John Green
Veronica Roth

Any book in these series:
Fly Guy by Tedd Arnold
BOB Books by Bobby Lynn Maslen and John R. Maslen
Pete the Cat by James Dean
Magic Tree House by Mary Pope Osborne
Rainbow Magic by Daisy Meadows
Big Nate by Lincoln Pierce
I Spy by Jean Marzollo
Can You See What I See by Walter Wick
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
Dork Diaries by Rachel Renee Russell
Geronimo Stilton by Geronimo Stilton
Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey
American Girls by various authors
Artemis Fowl by Eion Colfer
Bad Kitty by Nick Bruel

Any titles in these series:
Berenstain Bears
Curious George
Clifford the Big Red Dog
Disney (especially princesses)
Jake and the Pirates
Elephant and Piggie
Fancy Nancy
I Spy
Pete the Cat
Thomas the Tank Engine
Maisy (by Lucy Cousins)
Lunch Lady (by Jarrett Krosoczka)

Books by these authors/illustrators:
Sandra Boynton
Margaret Wise Brown
Eric Carle
Mo Willems
Gordon Korman
Rick Riordan

Alien in My Pocket series by Nate Ball
American Girl books
Barbie Beginner Readers
Beginner Reader books such as I Can Read, Rookie Readers, Easy Reader Leveled Books
Berenstain Bears
Big Nate books by Lincoln Pierce
Captain Underpants series books
Curious George
Clifford the Big Red Dog
Diary of a Wimpy Kid book series
Dora Beginner Readers
Dorling Kindersley readers
Elephant and Piggie series by Mo Willems
Fancy Nancy books by Jane O’Connor
Froggy books by Jonathan London
Franklin books by Paulette Bourgeois
Geronimo Stilton books
Little Critter books by Mercer Mayer
Magic Puppy books by Sue Bentley
Pete the Cat Beginner Readers
Pinkalicious books by Victoria Kann
Puppy Place books by Ellen Miles
Princess Posey books by Stephanie Greene
Super Heroes Beginner Readers
Thomas the Tank Engine
Tom and Jerry series by Benjamin Bird
Transformers series
Star Wars Beginner Readers
Seasonal & Holiday books
Superman Family Adventures series by Art Baltazar
You Choose: Scooby-Doo! Series by Laurie Sutton
We Both Read series

Books by these authors/illustrators:
Dr. Seuss
Margaret Wise Brown
Mo Willems
Eric Carle

Books about these subjects:
Alphabet, Colors, Numbers
Dentists, Doctors
Going to Daycare, Going to Kindergarten, Going to School
LEGO books and LEGO Storybooks
Tractors, Trucks, Trains, Planes, Fire Engines

Puppy Place series by Ellen Miles
Minecraft series
Rainbow Magic series by Daisy Meadows
Lego series books, especially Ninjago
Part-time Princess by Deborah Underwood, Cambria Evans
Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women by Catherine Thimmesh, Melissa Sweet
The Princess Knight by Cornelia Funke, Kerstin Meyer
Dangerously Ever After by Dashka Slater, Valeria Docampo
Not All Princesses Dress in Pink by Jane Yolen, Heidi E. Y. Stemple, Anne-Sophie Lanquetin
Rad American Women A-Z: Rebels, Trailblazers, and Visionaries who Shaped Our History . . . and Our Future! (City Lights/Sister Spit)
by Kate Schatz, Miriam Klein Stahl
Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty
Jet Plane: How It Works (My Readers) by David Macaulay
The New Way Things Work by David Macaulay
The Man in the Moon (The Guardians of Childhood) by William Joyce
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O’Brien
Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective by Donald J. Sobol
How to Outrun a Crocodile When Your Shoes Are Untied (My Life Is a Zoo) by Jess Keating
Louise Loves Art by Kelly Light
The Tree Lady: The True Story of How One Tree-Loving Woman Changed a City Forever by H. Joseph Hopkins
Sydney & Simon: Full Steam Ahead! by Paul Reynolds, Peter Reynolds
Animalium (Welcome to the Museum) by Jenny Broom, Katie Scott
Louise Loves Art by Kelly Light
Mr. Wayne’s Masterpiece by Patricia Polacco
Leroy Ninker Saddles Up: Tales from Deckawoo Drive, Volume One by Kate DiCamillo

(The Lebanon County list also can be viewed with links to by clicking here.)

Monkey Not Ready for Kindergarten
I Will Chomp You
There was an Old Dragon Who Swallowed a Knight
Ready for Pumpkins
Please, Mr. Panda
Where are My Books?

Board books:
Llama Llama Jingle Bells
Little Blue Truck’s Christmas
Gobble Gobble Tucker
Ten on the Sled
Eight Jolly Reindeer


Dora the Explorer
PBS Kids

‘Bouquets for Books’ children’s book drive returns Oct. 31-Nov. 7

Bouquets for Books logo for web or interactive pieces

Our annual children’s book drive is back for its 10th edition.

“Bouquets for Books” returns Oct. 31-Nov. 7 to benefit public libraries in Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon and York counties.

In its nine years, Bouquets for Books has collected nearly 14,000 books for the libraries.

For each book, donors will receive a free bouquet, up to three per family per visit, while supplies last. Used books will not be accepted.

You can view the library systems’ individual wish lists here.

‘Homespun Holiday’ selected as winning entry in our name-the-Christmas-arrangement contest

It was like a Christmas present in need of a bow.

croppedRoyer's new Christmas arrangement

We had developed a new arrangement for this holiday season.

It would come in a red mason jar and include red carnations, white alstroemeria, hypericum, tips of Douglas fir and white pine, pinecones, and shiny red stick-ins.

The only ingredient missing was a name.

But that has been taken care of, too, thanks to more than 450 entries in our online name-the-arrangement contest.

The winning entry: Homespun Holiday

Three people submitted the winning name, and as their prize they will receive one of the arrangements in early December when it becomes available to the public. The winners are Lori Heisey of Columbia; Katharine Hoch of Hummelstown; and Diana Myers of York.

“We received many thoughtful suggestions, but as soon as we saw ‘Homespun Holiday’ we knew it was the one,” said Greg Royer, president and CEO of Royer’s. “Thanks to our winners and to everyone else who submitted names. We can’t wait to introduce the Homespun Holiday arrangement.”

5 ways for children to celebrate National Grandparents Day


Marian McQuade was an expert in grandparenting. A West Virginia mother of 15, she had 43 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.

If McQuade’s name doesn’t ring a bill, her work no doubt will. She was the founder of National Grandparents Day, which President Jimmy Carter signed into law in 1978.

National Grandparents Day is held on the first Sunday after Labor Day (Sept. 13 in 2015; Sept. 11 in 2016; Sept. 10 in 2017). September was chosen to signify the autumn years of life, according to Legacy Project.

To help celebrate the holiday, the Royer’s Kids Club offers five activities that children can do for or with their grandparents:

  1. Send flowers: OK, this is an obvious one, but our founder, Hannah “Mom” Royer, was a doting grandmother and much loved by her grandchildren, as was her husband, Lester.
  2. Make a card: Draw a pretty picture and write a note to tell your grandparents how much they mean to you.
  3. Interview them: Grandma and grandpa have seen and experienced a lot of things in their lives. This handy interview form can help get you started. Listen closely to their answers because you can learn a lot.
  4. Trace your family tree: Here’s a family tree chart that will make it easy to identify the people in your family by generation.
  5. Read a book together: The kids club is a big believer in the power of reading. Here’s a terrific reading list to get you started.

Of course, there is an endless list of things that grandchildren and grandparents can do together.

What are some of your favorites?



Head of the class: photos from our back-to-school kids club event

Judging from these beautiful, smiling faces at Royer’s Kids Club’s back-to-school event on Aug. 22, these children are rested and ready for a challenging and rewarding new school year.

Thanks to all of the participants. We wish you the very best and encourage you to use every day as an opportunity to learn something new.

Meanwhile, we hope you’ll set aside time on Oct. 31 for our fifth and final kids club event of 2015. It’ll be Halloween, so be sure to wear your costume as we celebrate the holiday. It’s also the kick off our 10th annual “Bouquets for Books” children’s book drive to benefit area public libraries.

We look forward to seeing you then!


Royer’s food drive collects nearly 2,500 pounds for area food banks

From left, Brad Peterson, director of communications and marketing, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank; Jackie Dahms, manager of Royer's in West York; and Greg Royer, president and CEO, Royer's.

From left, Brad Peterson, director of communications and marketing, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank; and Royer’s Jackie Dahms, manager of West York, which collected the most pounds of any Royer’s store; and Greg Royer, president and CEO.

Royer’s annual food drive collected 2,467 pounds of non-perishable items for the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank and the Greater Berks Food Bank.

From June 20-27, “Royer’s Stems Hunger” asked customers to drop off donations at any of our stores. In return, donors received a free carnation for each food item, up to a maximum of six carnations per family per visit.

Also contributing was Drayer Physical Therapy Institute, which participated in the food drive for the second year in a row. Drayer’s corporate office in Hummelstown and outpatient centers in Camp Hill, Carlisle, Colonial Park, Enola, Harrisburg and Mechanicsburg collected 307 pounds.

In its five-year history, Royer’s Stems Hunger has collected nearly five tons of food.

Outdoor weddings, weather and having a Plan B


On this particular September wedding day, the misty weather presented some logistical challenges for the bride and groom.

The ceremony that had been planned for a beautiful garden had to be moved indoors on short notice. A ballroom had to be transformed into a beautiful garden setting, complete with an arch and flower-festooned aisle.

As they say, into every life some rain must fall. And it was a good reminder that weather is one variable that no one controls, no matter how good of a wedding planner he or she is.

If you want an outdoor wedding, it’s best to have a Plan B just in case. We all know how variable the weather can be in Pennsylvania, after all.

A number of years ago, the Farmers’ Almanac solicited submissions for its “Worst Wedding Weather Contest.” After Texas and Florida, Pennsylvania tied Ohio and Indiana for the most submissions.

Couples from those states “have experienced the soggiest, snowiest, windiest, most hurricane-hampered and hail-ridden wedding weather,” according to the Farmers’ Almanac.

In fact, a Philadelphia-area couple won the contest’s grand prize (a warm-weather cruise) with a tale of how a record snowfall interrupted their wedding plans.

Many factors to consider

So what should you consider when it comes to creating that Plan B for your outdoor wedding? There are many factors, none more important than the safety and well-being of the wedding couple and their guests.

An article from wedding expert Nina Callaway offers “10 tips for the perfect outdoor wedding.”

Of course, we’re pretty protective of the flowers, too.

We were on hand for that misty September wedding mentioned above. Being a perishable product, flowers require a tender touch. While do-it-yourself can be tempting when it comes to flowers (and other aspects of a wedding), it’s also comforting when a professional is on hand, in good weather and bad.

A florist will ensure that your flowers look their beautiful best. Unlike the weather, this is an aspect of your wedding that you can control.

Thanks for voting Royer’s to ‘best of’ lists

Royer’s received the honors, but it’s you, our valued customers, who deserve the applause.

Thanks to you, we continue to be recognized on multiple “best of” lists compiled by area media outlets.

“We’re thrilled when we are voted the best in the communities we serve, but we’ve always stopped short of asking for someone to vote for us,” said Greg Royer, president and CEO. “We’d rather win on our everyday activities, which makes it truly an honor that our customers recognize us in these ways.”

Among this year’s honors:
Best of Lebanon Valley
“Best of Lebanon Valley”/Lebanon Daily News
Royer’s was named the top florist for the fifth year in a row.

“Best of Harrisburg”/Susquehanna Style
In its June issue, the magazine named Royer’s “best florist.”

“Best of York”/York Sunday News
This year’s survey received more than 16,000 ballots, including 5,800 in the florist category. Said the newspaper: “Looking for the perfect centerpiece for your next event oracustom arrangement for your upcoming wedding? Look no further than these favorite York-area florists. Family-owned Royer’s Flowers & Gifts is the first place winner for its wide selection and dedication to meeting customers’ needs.”