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Reading fair scheduled

March 28, 2005

The 2005 Washington County Reading Day Fair - "STOP. DROP. READ." - will be Saturday, May 14, at Robinwood Medical Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The goal of the event, organized by the Partners In Literacy Committee of the Hagerstown-Washington County Chamber of Commerce, is to raise awareness of literacy issues in the community. It is meant to engage children and adolescents as lifelong learners, and is intended to help families read together and show kids that reading is fun.

The family event will celebrate reading with costumed characters, drama presentations, entertainment from area choral groups, literacy displays from area schools, authors, vendors, face painting, balloons, hot dogs, popcorn and free books.

Also, as part of the Washington County Association's 100th Anniversary events, the Washington County Hospital Auxiliary will sponsor a display of nursing memorabilia and antique emergency vehicles (firetrucks, ambulances, police cars and hearses).

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Avi, a 2003 Newbery Medal winning author, will be a special guest at the event. He has published more than 55 books for young people and received many other writing honors, including two Newbery Honors, the Horn Book Award, the Scott O'Dell Award, the Christopher Award and many state awards.

His serial novel "Reading the Sky" has been published in The Herald-Mail newspapers with a chapter printed each week from Feb. 9 through May 4. Readers have the option to cut and save each chapter in a specially printed scrapbook. Avi will speak to the audience and will be available for autographs.

A community-wide book drive will be April 4 to 22. Gently used or new books suitable for babies through teens may be dropped off at any Washington County public school or the following locations:

Borders Books Music Movies and Cafe; Brethren Mutual Insurance Co.; participating McDonald's restaurants; the office of Dr. Robert E. Weiss; the office of Drs. Ronald G. Toothman and Thomas J. Barra; Robinwood Medical Center; Valley Mall; Washington County Free Library; Wright-Gardner Insurance Co.; and The Herald-Mail Co.

Anyone wishing to volunteer for the book drive or on the day of the event may call The Herald-Mail Co. at 301-733-5131.

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