Read and get rewarded! Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings joined students and community supporters met to kick off the 2018 Mayor’s Summer Reading Challenge. The free 10-week program, which runs June 2-Aug. 11, encourages daily reading. Presented by Epsilon, the Mayor’s Summer Reading Challenge is a family affair open to children and adults. Participants can enjoy fantastic prizes and more than 2,500 weekly STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) activities offered throughout the summer. Registration is now underway at any of the 29 Dallas library locations or online at dallaslibrary.org/msrc.
While the Challenge officially begins June 2, people may register throughout the summer. Special kickoff parties will take place at every library location on Saturday, June 2. These include astronaut training camps, Black Panther movie parties, petting zoos, performers, Mad Science demos, magicians and more. (Check with each local library for specific details.)
This year, the Challenge is working with companies and organizations to conduct new book drives either onsite at their locations or by offering online book drives where people can easily make monetary donations.
Delivering remarks at today’s kickoff were Amit Deshpande, senior vice president of analytics, Epsilon; Cheryl Brown, director of community engagement, Cigna North Texas and Oklahoma; Carol Roberts, community and partnership marketing manager, Albertson’s/Tom Thumb; Christine Anderson, director of corporate communications, Sammons Corporation; Matthew Randazzo, CEO of the Dallas Foundation; Suzanne Massey, director of community relations, SMU; Mary Wilonsky, executive director of the Friends of the Dallas Public Library; and Jo Giudice, director, Dallas Public Library. Students from Charles Rice Learning Center were on hand, along with the Dallas Cowboys’ mascot Rowdy, Dallas Stars’ mascot Victor E. Green, Dallas Mavericks’ mascots Mavs Man and Champ, and Dallas Wings’ mascot Lightning.
FULL STEAM AHEAD. Thanks to The Dallas Foundation and the Friends of the Dallas Public Library, more than 2,500 weekly STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) activities will take place at all 29 Dallas library locations throughout the summer. Family-fun will include DIY solar ovens, oil spill cleanup, crafts, foosball game building, terrarium creations, owl pellet dissection, cityscape painting, infinity tiles, fascinating fossils and more, plus special performers, visits by unusual animals and insects, and musical shows. Interactive programs will be presented by partner organizations such as the Dallas Children’s Theater, Dallas Museum of Art, and Perot Museum of Nature and Science.
READING CHALLENGE RULES AND PRIZES. Children ages 0 to 18 can earn incentive prizes by reading at least 20 minutes a day. Readers can log each day they read online at dallaslibrary.org/msrc or at any Dallas Public Library location. Books, e-books, audiobooks, newspapers and magazines all count towards reading, but video games and websites do not.
Once 10 days of 20-minute reading have been logged, young participants may visit their nearest library to pick up a free book of their choice PLUS a pass or coupon to some of the area’s top attractions and eateries including the Texas Rangers, Dallas Stars, Dallas Zoo, Dallas Children’s Theater, Dallas Mavericks, SMU Meadows Museum, Medieval Times, Nasher Sculpture Center, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Pizza Hut, SusieCakes and more. For every 10 days of 20-minute reading, they can visit their library for more free books and prizes – with giveaways awarded at 10, 20, 30, 40 and 50 days of reading.
Adults will be entered into weekly and grand prize drawings for every 10 days of 20-minute reading they log. Every title/10 days logged counts toward an entry in the adult weekly prize drawings along with grand-prize drawings at week 5 and week 10.
Grand prizes. Kids who read at least 50 days by Aug. 11 will be entered to win the grand prizes, including a behind-the-scenes tour of the Dallas Zoo’ penguin exhibit; a behind-the-scenes tour of City Vet Oaklawn; Dallas Stars tickets plus a tour and post-game meet-and-greet with the team; VIP experiences with the SMU football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball teams including tickets behind the bench, a facilities tour and a meet-and-greet with the team; a behind-the-scenes tour of Toyota Stadium and admission to the National Soccer Hall of Fame; a chance to shadow a healthcare professional for four hours at Baylor Scott & White Health Heart and Vascular Hospital; an opportunity to see a surgical spine case at Wellspine P.A.; a tasting and $100 gift certificate to SusieCakes; a virtual reality party at Spark!; and more.
For more information on how to get plugged in, visit here.