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  • Writer's pictureBenay Hicks

40,000 in 4 Hours

By Ginger Young

This MLK Day, Dr. King’s spirit of service and community was on full display in Durham and across the Triangle. Over the course of four hours, more than 500 cars drove through Durham Central Park to participate in the National Day of Service as part of Book Harvest’s 10th annual Dream Big Book Drive and Community Celebration.

In a single afternoon, 40,753 new and gently used children’s books were donated to share with children in our community. Nearly 1,000 colorful string backpacks filled with children’s books were given to families and children to take home to read again and again and to keep forever – one small but important we to keep learning alive during this precarious time.

Attendees caught safe, masked, and socially distanced glimpses of Wool E. Bull, Ranger Baldy, Princess Leia, a lovable tiny horse from Saddle Up and Read, USA’s Ms. North Carolina 2021 Vera Bradley, and other book-loving stars.

We are so grateful to our beloved community. THANK YOU to the 127 book drive captains who collected books leading up to the event; our 64 generous 2021 Dream Big Sponsors; our friends at Durham Public Schools, who shared the event with all the district’s students; dozens of volunteers; and, most of all, the parents and children who whose love of reading – and learning! – were passionately on display and in action.

Together, we are a community that keeps Dr. King’s legacy very much alive. And together, we are a community that is ready to do the hard work to ensure that every child can grow up in a home that is rich with books.

Happy reading, everyone! Ginger Young

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