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Dr. Seuss inspired young cruisers on Carnival ships to read 213 million words this summer

Dr. Seuss inspired young cruisers on Carnival ships to read 213 million words this summer
Dodger Kike Hernandez reads to children during a Dr. Seuss Word Challenge program. (Carnival Cruise Lines)

Los Angeles Dodger Enrique “Kiké” Hernandez knows how to get a kid's attention. On the baseball field, he does what comes naturally. Off the field, he grabs a good book and starts reading aloud.

At a recent Long Beach event, Hernandez plopped Dr. Seuss’ signature striped hat on his head and gave an energetic reading of the new Dr. Seuss book “What Pet Should I Get?”

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The Puerto Rican baseball player was promoting the benefits of reading to hundreds of kids from local summer camps and social service organizations.

The reading session was part of a program to promote literacy sponsored by Dr. Seuss Enterprises and Random House Children’s Books called Dr. Seuss Word Challenge.

Children sailing on Carnival Cruise Line ships this summer were also challenged to take part in the program and encouraged to read as many Dr. Seuss words as possible during reading sessions on board.

The kids were asked to log their words and monitor their progress using a word tracker on Seussville.com.

The result? Kids on board read 213 million words during educational activities across the line’s 26-ship fleet.

Special programs connected to the Word Challenge featured reading sessions by Hernandez in Long Beach and New Orleans Saints tight end Ben Watson aboard Carnival Triumph in New Orleans.

The World Challenge is part of Seuss at Sea, Carnival’s partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, which showcases the words and world of the famous children’s author through family-oriented entertainment, youth activities and dining experiences.

Dr. Seuss Bookville is also featured on select ships, including the new Carnival Horizon which debuted this year and also offers the first Dr. Seuss water park at sea.

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