Sept. 22, 2009
The BIG READ begins.
CONTACT: Kim Jones, coordinator of the Mid-Ohio Valley BIG READ, 304-424-8000, ext. 480.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Mid-Ohio Valley BIG READ will kick off Saturday (Sept. 26) with a free southern social on the lawn of the Jackson County Courthouse from 2 to 4 p.m. in Ripley.
The kick-off event begins the Mid-Ohio Valley BIG READ, an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts, Museum and Library Services and Arts Midwest designed to restore reading to the center of American culture. The program brings communities together to read, discuss, and celebrate one of 30 selections from U.S. and world literature.
The Mid-Ohio Valley BIG READ is featuring the American classic, "To Kill a Mockingbird."
Saturday's Jackson County event will include special guest Atticus Finch, featuring local actor Dave Tackett, and offer southern food, games, and prizes. Limited free copies of the book "To Kill a Mockingbird" will also be available with BIG READ sign-up.
West Virginia University at Parkersburg and its partners, the Parkersburg-Wood County, Vienna, Wirt County and Jackson County public libraries are highlighting additional kick-off events during the week of Sept. 28 to feature and distribute the book and readers' guides. Information on the times and locations of all the kick-offs are available on the college's home page.
The Mid-Ohio Valley's Big Read will also include additional events and activities, including dramatic readings, during the month of October to engage readers in the classic. WVU Parkersburg will extend the project into surrounding counties through collaborations with the public libraries which will engage their local high schools and businesses with events involving the reading and discussion of the American classic. The film version of the book will also be screened.
WVU Parkersburg received $10,150 to initiate the reading program and is among 269 non-profit organizations awarded NEA grants to host Big Read celebrations in their communities. Part of the college's grant funding will go toward the purchase of copies of "To Kill a Mockingbird" and Kindle e-readers for the participating libraries.