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by Nacole Vickery and Denise Gary
Photographs by Denise Gary
The Page Coach traveled to the northern part of Arizona for a visit to the Navajo Nation Fair during their Kids Day, giving over 4,000 books to children at the event! It also happened to be International Literacy Day and we had an absolutely stupendous time! We want to spend every International Literacy Day this way!
When we arrived at the fair, we were warmly welcomed by staff and attendees alike! Our every need was taken care of by our hosts, Three Rivers Education Foundation and Navajo Nation Museum, both of whom had arranged this very special opportunity for Kids Need to Read. Teachers arrived with their classes and all of the students excitedly waited in line for their turn to choose their brand new books from three tables loaded with literary treasure. We were greeted with many stories about everyone’s love of reading and how important it was for them to have access to books. We never stopped handing out books and replenishing the tables all day long. The children were wonderfully well behaved! Each child received three books to read and keep (fiction, nonfiction, and Highlights magazine) and everyone—kids, teachers, caregivers—seemed so happy! KNTR bookmarks were also highly desired by all and it was heartwarming to watch teachers explaining their purpose to the youngest children.
In addition to the school children, many other people approached the table, as word of mouth of The Page Coach spread throughout the fair grounds. Parents and grandparents came to ask if they could pick books for the little ones who were unable to attend the event. One very special moment occurred when a grandmother approached the table with confidence and asked us for a book so that her grandchildren could continue to teach her to read, as she had never been given that opportunity. It was a joy to help her select books that were right for her. It was a wonderful day, with the children and their families excited to have new books to add to their home libraries.
Once the books were handed out, we explored the fair and took in the sights, sounds and foods that were available. Our day was at an end and not wanting to miss out on a culinary feast, we enjoyed the roast mutton on fry bread and left with full bellies and happiness in our hearts.
Numerous thanks to our partners Three Rivers Education Foundation and the Navajo Nation Museum for making this happen, as well as Highlights for Children and GreaterGood.org for the many reading resources they provide! Special shout-out to Mark Povich of Three Rivers, as well as Ben Sorrell and Nate Bitsoie of Navajo Nation Museum! We appreciate you!
The Page Coach was made possible by a grant from
Employees Community Fund of Boeing Arizona
Major Contributors to The Page Coach
Employees Community Fund of Boeing Arizona
Highlights for Children
Phoenix Suns Charities
Pi Beta Phi Foundation
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