Contact: Craig D'Ooge (202) 707-9189

November 7, 1994

"Shape Your Future-Read" To Be Library of Congress National Reading Promotion Theme for 1995-1996

Gumby and Dudley the Dragon To Help Reach Young Audiences

To remind Americans of the importance of reading in shaping their lives and the lives of their children, the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress has chosen "Shape Your Future-- READ!" as the theme for the Library's 1995-96 national reading promotion campaign.

"Reading teaches us about the world," said John Y. Cole, the center's director. "It helps us make wise choices and prepare ourselves for the path we have chosen, and it tells us of the achievements of courageous men and women who have contributed to our society."

"Shape Your Future--READ!" is a unifying theme for organizing and supporting reading and literacy projects that benefit all age groups. It continues the work of hundreds of national and community coalitions formed in previous Center for the Book reading campaigns, particularly "Books Change Lives" in 1993-94.

"For the new campaign, we will mobilize our 29 state centers and the 135 national educational and civic organizations that serve as our Reading Promotion Partners," said Cole. "Moreover, we have two special spokescharacters helping us promote the theme among young people: Gumby, the classic green clay boy and star of "The Gumby Show," a weekday television show for kids on Nickelodeon, and Dudley the Dragon, whose hit show for children, "The Adventures of Dudley the Dragon" is seen on public television stations around the country.

The new theme will be introduced on Nov. 16 at the Library of Congress at ceremonies marking National Young Reader's Day, a joint project of the Center for the Book and Pizza Hut, Inc., sponsor of the BOOK IT! Reading Incentive Program in the nation's schools.

A brochure outlining how individuals and organizations can participate in the "Shape Your Future--READ!" campaign is now available. To receive a copy, write the Center for the Book, Library of Congress, Washington, DC 20540-8200.

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PR 94-173
ISSN 0731-3527

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