Kids can pick out free books


Kids check out free books at Gift of Reading. Participants say the hardest part if choosing from all the wonderful offerings. FILE PHOTO

BAR HARBOR — Mount Desert Island area youngsters once again will have a chance to pick out a free book for themselves during the Mount Desert Islander’s annual “Gift of Reading.” The event is set for Friday, Dec. 5, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the MDI YMCA on Park Street as part of the Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce’s Midnight Madness sale and celebration.

Children from toddlers to teens are invited to stop by. Tables will be overflowing with brand new books donated by the Simon & Schuster publishing company of New York. Each child will be allowed to select and keep the book of their choice from hundreds of titles by well known authors.

“It’s our way of giving something back to this island community that has been so generous in their support of us,” said Islander editor Earl Brechlin. “We hope it encourages kids to keep reading.”

The books are provided by former area resident Lisa Donovan. She works at Simon & Schuster and regularly collects youth and childrens books that pass through her office for the program which began in Ellsworth as a way to honor former Ellsworth American editor Hale Joy.

The paper also purchases hundreds of popular Maine-themed books to include in the event. In the past few years the Islander and American have given some 10,000 books to area children.

Books are also donated to area charity gift programs.

Free “I am a Mount Desert Islander” stickers also will be available.

For more information call 288-0556.

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