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Molly ShoreAt St. Finbar School, it was...

Molly Shore

At St. Finbar School, it was not a day to jump and play. Oh no, no

way did the children play. Instead, guest readers read. They read,

instead, to each lad and lass in kindergarten through the


fourth-grade class.

Celebrating the sixth annual “Read Across America Day,” guests,

including Burbank City Councilwoman Marsha Ramos, appeared at the

school Monday.


The event, which promotes literacy among young children, also was

a birthday tribute to Theodor Geisel, known to millions of children,

parents and teachers as Dr. Seuss. Geisel would have turned 99 on

March 2.

Ramos read two Dr. Seuss stories to Kathy Coultas’ and Moira

Graham’s kindergartners.

“I remember reading these books to [my sons] when they were

younger,” Ramos said. “We had a whole shelf of them. ‘Fox in Socks’


was my favorite. I still have the book.”

First-grade guest reader Ryan Young, a former St. Finbar teacher

now working as an executive assistant at Baskin Robbins, appeared in

a “The Cat in the Hat” costume, wearing a tall red-and-white- striped

hat and white gloves and carrying a big black umbrella.

Third-grade guest reader Lee Bellis and her husband, Robert,

created St. Finbar’s school library in 1970 when their three

daughters, including Lorraine Bellis-Mark, were students there. For


the past four years, Bellis-Mark has been the school’s “Read Across

America” program coordinator.

Other guest readers were Linda Guillen, community relations

manager for Hometown Buffet, and Pam Kulik, community relations

manager for Barnes & Noble Booksellers in Burbank.

When the readings were done, the children filed into the school’s

hall, where they had assembled earlier.

Bellis-Mark’s son, Kevin Mark, 8, made a presentation on behalf of

his grandparents.

“I realize that all the Dr. Seuss books are still readable, but

they are worn out, so I would like to present to the school new Dr.

Seuss books,” Kevin said. The Bellises gave about 60 new books to the

school library.

The children celebrated by eating cookies and drinking juice, but

not before singing a rousing version of “Happy Birthday” to Dr.