The Big Rothesay Read is a community based initiative that promotes reading and encourages literacy. The anticipated annual event caught like wildfire in 2009 and hasn't stopped since. The initiative is the only community read in the country that boasts the complete participation of the entire student population of a high school, Rothesay High School. But it is not only students who participate. Each year, the book selections have successfully enticed increasing numbers of educators, parents, grandparents and citizens of all backgrounds to simultaneously read and discuss a common piece of literature over a six week period.
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The authors have loved the idea of the community read project and have been thrilled to have their book chosen. “When they come, they are treated like rock stars in our little town. And the students get to see that celebrated authors are real people, which might make a student's dream of being an author seem a little more attainable,” says Gallagher. Last year the committee travelled around town with a life-sized cutout of author Jonathan Friesen and challenged the community to “Find Flat Jonathan” with daily hints of his whereabouts posted on the Read's Facebook page and announced on a local radio station. Mr. Friesen himself was occasionally posting tongue-in-cheek comments and anecdotes on the page. 2012 brought Neil Pasricha and The book of (even More) Awesome to The Big Rothesay Read with a positive and AWESOME response from students at Rothesay High and the community alike.
“We're always thinking up fun ways to keep The Big Rothesay Read top-of-mind,” says a committee member. With five years of overwhelming success in The Big Rothesay Read's back pocket, an enthusiastic committee bolstered by their Literacy Coalition Award of New Brunswick award, a host of new community and corporate sponsors on board, and news that other New Brunswick schools and towns plan to follow suit and host their own community reads, it is no surprise that the Rothesay community is once again buzzing with anticipation over what this year's book selection will be."
This year's top secret book is revealed! All welcome.
Community Book Discussion
Author presentations at rhs