Funeral for illiteracy closes book on ‘Big Read’

Published 10:12 pm Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Demopolis Public Library hosted a funeral for illiteracy to bring an end to “The Big Read” on Thursday.

The Big Read is a statewide literacy promotion to encourage people to read for fun. This year’s event was centered around “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” by Mark Twain.

The funeral was based on Tom Sawyer’s funeral from the book. People came dressed in funeral and Hannibal attire to help bury illiteracy.

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Following the funeral, refreshments were served.

The pickets entered in the picket-painting contest were put up in the city park downtown.

The first-place winners were Shoni Jones and Holli Gandy, who had the design of a raft on the river on their picket.

The second-place winners were Clay White and Mark Johnson, who designed a bookcase on their picket.

The winners received a library bag and summer reading T-shirts. The first-place members each got a WalMart gift card.

The Big Read began on Feb. 6, encouraging people to read “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.” Robert Valentine of Murray, Ky. — a noted Mark Twain impersonator — helped to kick off the event with the reading of the first page and a nighttime performance at Demopolis High School.

The library also gave out copies of the book and had all kinds of games and fun events for people to enjoy.

At the funeral on Thursday, the official reading of the last page closed the book on the event.

Demopolis Public Library director Morgan Grimes said the event went well, and several people enjoyed it.