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Read-a-Thon Wrap-up October 23, 2009

Posted by Galaxy in Book news, Local Happenings, Store Events.
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Girls reading - pmFor our first Read-a-Thon, in 2008, we had prepared by talking with other booksellers who had hosted Read-a-Thons in the past. We had no particular expectations going in. We were bowled over to have 38 participants, mainly ages 12-17, raising around $830 for Hardwick Head Start.

This year, we’d been through the whole process and had a good idea of what we were getting into. We recruited extra volunteers to chaperone and set some new ground rules to make sure everyone was on the same page as far as what was expected and what was off limits during the 24 hours we’d be spending together in the bookstore.

Smiling facesYet again, our expectations were blown away–we had 53 participants (including chaperones, many of whom found time to do some reading of their own) and, as of five days later, have raised $1040.98 for Hardwick Head Start and Early Head Start! According to several phone calls, emails, and drop-in visits, we are expecting to reach over $1,100 when all is said and done.

reading in the aislesAnd what did the Read-a-Thonners do to honor the pledges they raised? Reading, of course, played a big part. Just from the participants who chose to keep logs of the books they read, we had a count of 14,063 pages read. In visual terms, that’s the equivalent of a stack of 18 copies of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows–in hardcover! Our winner for most pages read logged over 4,000 pages in her 24 hours here!

Of course, these voracious readers also had an appetite for food, and this is another way in which our community showed generous support for the Head Start programs. Hall’s Market donated several bags of fruit; Patchwork Farm & Bakery gave us a discount on delicious pizzas for Friday night’s dinner; Connie’s Kitchen delivered some fresh baked muffins and cinnamon bread for breakfast on Saturday; and Grand Union gave us a gift certificate that we used towards lunches and snacks.Story time

We also wanted to give people a chance to take breaks from their books from time to time, and activities such as storytelling and Literary Jeopardy were popular diversions. Susan O’Connell–the children’s librarian at Library AnnexJeudevine Library–created a special “library annex” here at the store for anyone who ran out of reading material, and at midnight led a Raid on the Library that let people stretch their legs and stock up on additional books.

A 5 a.m. scavenger hunt through the bookstore found very few takers (two, to be exact), since nearly everyone else was fast asleep.

more sleepers

sleeping soundly

In the morning, however, they were awake and ready to hit the books again.

Reading in the kids' room

mystery reader

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