ALA announces Library Card Sign-up Month Sweepstakes winners; five libraries receive Arthur® book sets

Contact: Laura Schulte-Cooper

(312) 280-2165

ALA News Release

For Immediate Release

November 2000

ALA announces Library Card Sign-up Month Sweepstakes winners; five libraries receive Arthur® book sets

The American Library Association (ALA) is pleased to announce the winners of the Arthur® Library Card Sign-up Event Sweepstakes. The winning libraries are: Cranberry (Penn.) Public Library; Eccles-Lesher Memorial Library, Rimersburg, Penn.; Jacksboro (Tenn.) Public Library; San Carlos Branch Library, San Diego (Calif.) Public Library; and Washington-Centerville Public Library, Centerville, Ohio.

Arthur, the beloved children’s character, was the spokes-aardvark for this year’s library card sign-up drive. Marc Brown, author and illustrator of the Arthur books, created the campaign poster for ALA, featuring Arthur characters and the slogan “Having Fun Isn’t Hard When You’ve Got a Library Card.”

Thirty-one eligible sweepstakes entries were received from public libraries around the country that hosted special Library Card Sign-up Month events in September featuring an Arthur theme. Winners were drawn at random, and each will receive a set of Arthur ® Adventure books donated by Little, Brown & Co. and a set of Arthur ® Step into Reading and Great Big Flap Books donated by Random House.

“We really enjoyed reading the stories we received from all the libraries,” said Virginia Walter, president of the Association for Library Service to Children. “This month-long celebration was made infinitely more fun with the combination of Arthur and librarians’ creativity. I can’t think of a better spokesperson to encourage children to read and to get a library card. Our thanks go out to Marc Brown; Little, Brown & Co., and Random House.”

At Cranberry Public Library, a live Arthur character appeared in person, shaking hands, giving hugs and signing autographs for young patrons. An Arthur video was shown, and Arthur activity sheets were provided.

Eccles-Lesher Memorial Library hosted a birthday party for Arthur including cupcakes and a reading of Arthur books. Children sang “Happy Birthday” and made party hats and birthday cards for Arthur. As a gift for Arthur, children brought a book to be added to the library’s collection, and in return received a book bag, bookmark, coloring page and book list.

The Jacksboro Public Library set up a special sign-up table at an annual Kids Day America event. They displayed Arthur books, audios, videos, pencils and library address cards, and attracted about 50 potential future library users. The San Carlos Branch of the San Diego Public Library held two events, including an Arthur video, Arthur crafts and a reading of Arthur books. Thirty children and eight adults were issued library cards during the two events.

A live Arthur character also appeared at the Washington-Centerville Public Library, posing for photos with children. The event included Arthur stories, coloring pages and crafts, a guessing-jar contest and free bookmarks. Circulation was 144 percent above normal for the day.

Observed since 1987, Library Card Sign-up Month is a time when the ALA and libraries across the country remind parents that a library card is the more important school supply of all.