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An invitation – Join us for DCCCD’s African-American Read-In on Saturday, Feb. 4, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Majestic Theatre in Dallas. The event is free and open to the general public; seating is limited, so come early! Families and children age 8 or older are particularly welcome.
Presenting sponsor – Alliance Data
Special guests – Actor, writer and director Avery Brooks and author/life coach Johnny Wimbrey are sharing their talents and experiences with read-in participants. Brooks, known by many as Captain Sisko from “Star Trek: Deep Space 9,” was a presenter last summer at the Harlem Book Fair, where DCCCD read-in representatives co-produced the 2005 Wheatley Book Awards.
Feature production – “A Prince Came Out of Egypt: A Tribute to Ossie Davis”
An award-winning event – DCCCD’s African-American Read-In received the 2005 James Patterson PageTurner Award last fall, a first-year national award for nominated literacy projects. The Dallas read-in took first place among more than 1,500 nominees and applicants, winning $25,000; Patterson is an author, writer for the New York Times and founder of the award program.
A model program – DCCCD’s citywide African-American Read-In is a national model for other literacy program events and has created several literacy initiatives, including the George Dawson Literacy Awareness Campaign. Through the Dawson campaign, eight George Dawson “Hold Fast to Dreams” scholarships were awarded in 2005 to DCCCD students from the United States and other countries. The late George Dawson, a former south Dallas resident who learned to read at age 98 and wrote his autobiography (“Life Is So Good”), is the read-in’s literacy hero.
Other partners and sponsors – WFAA-TV (channel 8), K104-FM, KRNB-FM, KKDA-AM, Dallas Morning News, Dallas Weekly, Downtown Business News, NTheKnow.com, KidsNTheKnow.com, American Airlines, City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs, McDonald’s, Pro-Line International, Holt Rinehart Winston, Scholastic, Dallas Public Library, Harlem Book Fair, DART, Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages, Millennium Motors, Enterprise, Dallas Children’s Theater, Dallas Reads, Black Images Book Bazaar, Jokae’s African-American Books, Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English and Westin City Center-Dallas.
Community read-ins – The DCCCD read-in helps kick off Black History Month and encourages other groups in the community to hold their own events and to report back how many people participate. More than 35,000 Dallas-linked readers (students, organizations, families, book clubs and others) were documented in 2005; the Dallas citywide read-in goal is 10,000. The Dallas Independent School District documented more than 10,000 student participants alone last year!
Volunteers – In addition to the work of scores of DCCCD employees, more than 90 percent of the people who help stage the DCCCD annual read-in are volunteers; they are corporate professionals, stay-at-home moms, educators, local professional performance artists, published writers and community activists. Although they primarily are African-American, volunteers of all races support and serve the read-in. And more than 85 percent of those volunteers return the following year, renewing their commitment to service, literacy and learning in their community.