Los Angeles Times Reading by 9 Program to Launch "Road To Reading Adventure" Reading Incentive Program July 19-20

LOS ANGELES, June 25, 2003 – The Los Angeles Times Reading by 9 program on July 19-20 will launch an innovative reading incentive program, The Road to Reading Adventure, that encourages kindergarten through third-grade students to expand their reading skills while discovering Southern California's rich cultural heritage.

The program will be introduced officially during the first Los Angeles Times KidCity, a free, two-day outdoor educational adventure designed for children ages 7-13, which will be held July 19-20 at Exposition Park in Los Angeles.

The Road to Reading Adventure, sponsored by Bank of America and the Los Angeles Times, was developed by The Times' Reading by 9 program, a community-wide initiative aimed at helping kindergarten through third-grade students read at grade level by the age of nine.

"The Road to Reading Adventure is a multifaceted literacy program that reinforces the joy of reading and learning by encouraging Southern California youth to bring those experiences to life," said Lani Lattin Duke, director of The Times' Reading by 9 program. "The arts, history, nature, science and cultural activities being offered by the 17 institutions, museums, school and public libraries and other organizations with which we've partnered will supplement the reading component of the Road to Reading Adventure program."

"We developed the program to provide young children with the literacy skills that will help them in work and through life," said Duke. "In Southern California, two out of every three third-graders cannot read at grade level. Research shows that children who fail to read by the age of nine rarely catch up later. In many cases, they may never be able to realize their full career potential or contribute to and participate fully in our society."

The 17 Road to Reading Adventure partners in Southern California are:

• Los Angeles County – Autry Museum of Western Heritage, California African-
  American Museum, California Science Center, Japanese American National
  Museum, Los Angeles Zoo, Museum of Latin American Art, Museum of
  Tolerance, Music Center of Los Angeles, Natural History Museum of Los
  Angeles County

• Orange County – Discovery Science Center, The Bowers Museum of Cultural
  Art/Bowers Kidseum

• Riverside County – Riverside Municipal Museum, Riverside Art Museum

• San Bernardino County – Calico Ghost Town, Kimberly Crest House & Gardens

• Ventura County – Ventura County Museum of History & Art, Ventura County
  Maritime Museum

Program Components

The Road to Reading Adventure program includes:

• Travel Log – Children begin their literary journey with a Road to Reading
  Adventure Travel Log. The free pocket-sized, colorful booklet suggests
  interesting books to read and exciting places to visit. Travel logs can be
  requested by calling 1-877-READ BY 9 or by visiting any of the Road to
  Reading Adventure kiosks at KidCity on July 19-20.

• Reading Lists – Each of the Travel Log's four sections – Arts & Culture,
  History, Nature and Science – features a special reading list. Books can be
  found at school or public libraries and local bookstores. To earn credit for
  books read, participants must have their school or public librarian stamp or
  sign their travel log.

• Adventure Partner Visits – Travel logs describe special Road to Reading
  Adventure activities hosted by the 17 Adventure partners. Upon completion
  of each activity, children will receive a special sticker they can place in their
  travel log. Two Adventure partner visits will be required as part of the program.

• Adventure Journal –

In their travel logs, participants can make journal entries
  describing the books they read, the Adventure partners they visited, and what
  they learned.

• Road to Reading Adventure Sweepstakes – Every travel log contains
  information about and an entry form for the Road to Reading Adventure
  Sweepstakes. Entrants will have a chance to win a variety of prizes ranging
  from savings bonds to a family trip to Mexico. The names of all entrants will
  be included in a special Road to Reading Adventure Honor Roll to be published
  in The Times.

Children who complete the program will be recognized during the ninth annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, which will be held April 24-25, 2004 at UCLA.

About Reading by 9

Launched by the Los Angeles Times in 1998, Reading by 9 is a multi-year initiative aimed at helping Southern California kindergarten through third-grade students read at grade level by the age of nine. The program is conducted in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties, and is supported by almost 50 business, civic, education, media and philanthropic organizations.

About KidCity

Designed for children ages 7-13, KidCity is a weekend celebration of learning and literacy, and a showcase for the literary and creative arts, culture and history, science and technology, and sports.

KidCity will be held from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday, July 19, and Sunday, July 20, at Exposition Park, 700 S. State St. in Los Angeles. The event is free and open to the public. Parking is $6.

KidCity is the first major children's event at Exposition Park involving all five of the park's venues: California African-American Museum, California Science Center, City of Los Angeles' Exposition Park Intergenerational Community Complex, Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and Sports Arena, and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.

Detailed information about speakers, exhibits, demonstrations and interactive sessions will be published in the official Los Angeles Times KidCity event program, which will appear in the July 13 edition of The Times. Event information is also available online at www.latimes.com/kidcity.

About the Los Angeles Times

The Los Angeles Times, a Tribune Publishing company, is the largest metropolitan daily newspaper in the country and the winner of 30 Pulitzer Prizes, including three this year in national reporting, feature writing and feature photography. The Times publishes five regional editions covering the Los Angeles metropolitan area, Orange and Ventura counties, the San Fernando Valley, and an Inland Empire edition covering Riverside and San Bernardino counties, as well as a National edition.

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