CASPER, Wyo. — The 21st annual Natrona County celebration will be held at the Natrona County Library and Nicolaysen Art Museum at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, May 14. Over 1,050 Natrona County first-graders from public, private, and home schools will attend. In addition, nearly 7,500 books will be distributed to first-graders at Wyoming Reads literacy celebrations held in each of the state's 23 counties on Tuesday, May 14.
In addition, 250 Natrona County first-graders will receive their first library card. Celebrity Readers from the community will be stationed at the library to read books to the children, who will also enjoy a picnic lunch and a special fairytale about "The Good Queen Sue," a tribute to Sue Jorgensen, in whose memory this event was established.
The fairytale is presented as a play performed at the Nicolaysen Art Museum, featuring students from the Natrona County High School Theatre department. Music will be provided by Richard Turner, Bucky Walker, and Bill Hunt.
Earlier this year, children had the opportunity to choose which book they would like to receive from the following options:
- "Can I Be Your Dog?" by Troy Cummings
- "We Don’t Eat Our Classmates!" by Ryan T. Higgins
- "The Princess and the Pit Stop" by Tom Angleberger
- "Twig" by Aura Parker
- "Detective Dog" by Julia Donaldson
- "Crunch, the Shy Dinosaur" by Cirocco Dunlap
Wyoming Reads celebrations focus on the joy of reading, highlighted by each child receiving a hardback book with their name printed inside the cover, donated by the Sue Jorgensen Library Foundation.
John Jorgensen established the Sue Jorgensen Library Foundation in 1996 and founded the Casper Cares, Casper Reads festival to honor his late wife's commitment to children and reading. The celebration was expanded statewide as Wyoming Reads in 2006.
Partners in this year's Wyoming Reads celebration include the John P. Ellbogen Foundation, Tonkin Foundation, McMurry Foundation, Casper Rotary Club, Natrona County Recreation Joint Powers Board, Friends of the Natrona County Library, and a number of generous individuals.
For more information on Wyoming Reads, please visit wyomingreads.org