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Writing Contest Announced for Florida Celebration of Reading




The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy and children’s author Andrea Beaty announce the Celebration of Reading writing contest for students in grades three through five in Collier, Lee, Charlotte and Hendry counties.

Students are asked to read Ms. Beaty’s “Attack of the Fluffy Bunnies,” currently listed on Florida’s Sunshine State book list, then write a short story about their family’s holiday from the perspective of a family pet. Entries are limited to a maximum of 750 words and are due by 5 p.m. Monday, Jan. 28.

Fifteen contest winners, accompanied by their parents, will be recognized at a VIP breakfast, sponsored by Brown & Brown Public Risk Insurance Agency, to kick off the 13th annual Celebration of Reading on Friday, Feb. 15. Ms. Beaty, whose newest book, “Dorko the Magnificent” is scheduled for release in April, will be in attendance and will meet with the young writers.


“I was raised in Southern Illinois in a family of six kids, and we spent our summer days traipsing through the fields and forests hunting for adventure. We often found it. And sometimes it found us,” Ms. Beaty says. “I’m very excited to read the contestants’ essays and adventures and see how they inject humor into their work.”

“Attack of the Fluffy Bunnies” appeals to a wide variety of readers through narrative storytelling, comic book-style cartoons and frequent asides to the reader, says Liza McFadden, president of the Barbara Bush Foundation.

“We are very excited to have Andrea on hand in 2013 to celebrate the talent and imagination of student readers and writers,” Ms. McFadden adds.

Contest guidelines are posted on the Barbara Bush Foundation website Winners will be announced in schools and on the foundation’s website Thursday, Feb. 7.

Entries can be e-mailed to or mailed to the Barbara Bush Foundation, attn: COR 2013 Writing Contest, 516 N. Adams St., Tallahassee, FL, 32301.

About the celebration

The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy was founded almost 25 years ago, working to ensure each child’s lifelong success by preparing them to learn in school while providing parents a second chance to complete their education. Florida’s Celebration of Reading has raised almost $22 million for family literacy programs since the program was launched under then-Gov. Jeb Bush in 2001. Gov. Bush, who recently became co-chair of his mother’s national foundation with his sister, Doro Bush Koch, has hosted the reading event in Southwest Florida for 12 consecutive years to benefit family literacy programs helping thousands of parents and children learn to read. The foundation’s mission is to achieve 100 percent literacy in America based on the belief that education is a civil right for all.

Bill O’Reilly, best-selling author and host of “The O’Reilly Factor” on cable news, joins children’s author Ms. Beaty and two other best-selling authors on the program for the 13th annual Florida Celebration of Reading that takes place at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa. Mr. O’Reilly has achieved national notoriety as an opinion columnist and political commentator. His most recent book, “Killing Kennedy,” follows “Killing Lincoln.” He also has five non-fiction books and a memoir in his collection.

Other authors on the celebration program are Harlan Coben, whose last five consecutive novels have debuted in the No. 1 position on the New York Times bestseller list; and cardiologist Arthur Agatston, creator and author of “The South Beach Diet.”

Tickets to the Celebration of Reading are $250 per person and include the reading program, dinner and a booksigning with the authors. In addition to books provided to attendees as gifts, Barnes & Noble will sell titles on-site, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy.

Major Florida Celebration of Reading partners include AT&T, Comcast, Dollar General Foundation, Florida Lottery, Florida Trend, Prudential Financial, Publix Super Markets Charities, Scholastic, State Farm, SunTrust Foundation, Walt Disney World and Wells Fargo.

For tickets or sponsorship information for the 2013 Celebration of Reading, contact Tina Matte at 277-6295 or visit ¦


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Get in Touch

You may also contact us by phone at 850.562.5300 or by mail at:
Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy
516 North Adams Street • Tallahassee, Florida 32301