City Students Set to Ride the Road to Reading

Participants can win one of four bicycles and various gift cards, parents and teachers can also win thanks to Sunrise Rotary
Posted on 26 April 2024 by Chris Brown.

Medicine Hat Sunrise Rotary Club and Medicine Hat Public Library have partnered once again to encourage youth in the city to make two-wheeled trips to the library this summer, and four youth will get a get a new set of wheels to make those trips.

The Sunrise Rotary Ride the Road to Reading is back for another year.

Library staff have been invited by teachers to visit Grade 4 classes in the city the past month to share the literacy program and what the library has to offer. Each student gets a passport that serves as their entry form into the draw for one of four bikes and an assortment of gift cards when they come to the library with their parents for a tour.

Homeschool students in Medicine Hat are also eligible to participate.

“The idea is to bring them into the library, get them a card -- we’ll clear up any fines or fees -- show them how to use everything here, show them what we have to support homework help and school and recreational reading,” explains Carol Ann Cross-Roen, head of youth services.

Cross-Roen says Grade 4 is a key tipping point in library use.  

“They’re starting to get busy with sports and things and so they start to slip off with their library use,” she explains. “But we know that kids that have access to more books tend to become better readers and have higher levels of literacy all the way through life whether they pursue higher education or not.” 

She adds that in Grade 4 kids are starting to gain independence and can ride their bikes to the library, which is where the name Ride the Road to Reading comes from. 

Medicine Hat Sunrise Rotary Club has supported the program for more than a decade, by providing funds for prizes and to help with the costs of sending library ambassadors to the schools. At the end of the school year the club presents the winning students, a parent and a teacher with prizes.

For students there are four bicycles worth over $500 from Gravity Sports, five $100 gift cards for Medicine Hat Mall and six $50 gift cards for River Bee Books.

For both teachers and parents there is a $100 gift card for Medicine Hat Mall to be won.

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