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The Big Read of DeKalb County

February 25th, 2016
Categories: Kids, News

February 25th, 2016

The DeKalb Public Library applied for and won a highly competitive grant for $15,000, one of only 77 Big Read grants awarded nation-wide by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in partnership with Arts Midwest. The Big Read steering committee is thrilled to bring all the Big Read excitement back to DeKalb County. We are only one in three libraries in the nation to get this grant for nine consecutive years.

It is with the support of our community that keeps this initiative strong and alive. The goal of this and all past Big Read efforts has been to give away as many free books as possible to residents of DeKalb County. This year we have chosen “In the Time of the Butterflies” by Julia Alvarez. This books brings to life the tragic story of three sisters who fought back against the Trujillo regime in the Dominican Republic. It is a book for young adults and adults, therefore we have focused on high school aged students and adult organizations to give the book away (District #428, NIU, Libraries, etc.).

Thank you already to the individuals, schools, groups, businesses, and organizations who are participating in donating your time to host a program, sponsor The Big Read by handing out books and/or donated directly to match our grant. It is a great accomplishment that DeKalb County can show proven results that we are all dedicated to the advancement of learning!

Big Read Events

Click here for a link to all Big Read Events

We have over seventy events all over the county this year in preparation for the BIG keynote speaker, Julia Alvarez on Tuesday, March 22nd at 6:00 p.m. at the library!  All month long we will have events that tie in the dramatic themes from the book into our programs. There will be a movie showing at the Egyptian, a discussion about the prevention of violence against women, a Monarch Waystation tour, and much, much more. We will hand out free copies of the books at each event!

We will have a display of Dominican artifacts, as well as a book display at the DeKalb Public Library all month long. These items are on loan to us from the Dominican Republic Tourism office in Chicago. We thank them for their generosity.

This is all brought to you by the National Endowment for the Arts and Arts Midwest. It also is brought to you by the people/organizations who sponsor us by contributing their time and/or monetary donations. Please see our sponsor list below and support them as well.

For a glimpse of past Big Read events, check out our Flickr Big Read albums for 2014, 2015, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and 2007.

We’d like to thank our Steering Committee members from Kishwaukee College Family Literacy Program, Altrusa International of DeKalb/Sycamore, School District #428, and NIU College of Liberal Arts Office of External Programming. We’d also like to thank our community for its support!

For a glimpse of this year’s Big Read activities and events, check out our Flickr page. To see other past Big Read events, click on the following links for 2014 20132012, 20112010,20092008 and 2007.


The Steering Committee

Big Readers

  • Friends of the NIU Libraries
  • NIU Latino Resource Center

Best Sellers

  • Clarence & Veronica Casella
  • Dr. Virginia R. Cassidy
  • First National Bank
  • Kishwaukee College Foundation
  • Clark & Arlene Neher
  • Gayle Thistlewaite

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