The Big Read


July 12, 2012
Contact: Mimi Nothacker
(985) 893-6280 ext. 120

St. Tammany Parish Library To Participate In The Big Read:
Parish to Read The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien

ST. TAMMANY- Thanks to a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), residents all around St. Tammany will spend September reading the book The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien. The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities announced Wednesday that it was one of 78 organizations awarded a grant for three Louisiana library systems, including St. Tammany Parish Library, to participate in The Big Read. The Big Read is an initiative of the NEA designed to restore reading to the center of American culture and is managed by Arts Midwest. St. Tammany Parish Library’s The Big Read Events will take place in September.

Donald Westmoreland, Director of the St. Tammany Parish Library, said, “We are excited to get to be one of the three parishes involved in The Big Read.  We are grateful to have the opportunity to honor our St. Tammany veterans with a month of events focused on Tim O’Brien’s fictionalized account of his days in Vietnam. We hope that these events will provide a chance for open dialogue and discussion.”
NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman said, “At the NEA we know that the arts can help to create strong, vibrant communities by bringing people together. Through The Big Read, these 78 organizations are giving their communities the opportunity to share both great works of literature and memorable experiences.”

The Big Read provides communities nationwide with the opportunity to read, discuss, and celebrate one of 31 selections from U.S. and world literature. The 78 selected organizations will receive Big Read grants to promote and carry out community-based reading programs featuring activities such as read-a-thons, book discussions, lectures, movie screenings, and performing arts events. Participating communities also receive high quality, free-of-charge educational materials to supplement each title, including Reader’s, Teacher’s, and Audio Guides, which are also available for download on neabigread.org.

For more information about The Big Read please visit neabigread.org.

The St. Tammany Parish Library has been serving the citizens of St. Tammany Parish for more than sixty years. Our twelve branches offer over 542,000 loanable items including books, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks, and magazines. The library’s website offers access to downloadable audio and e-books, music downloads, research tools, magazines, and newspapers 24/7 and our programs and services are designed to meet residents’ cultural, informational, educational, and recreational needs.
The National Endowment for the Arts was established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. To date, the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation for the benefit of individuals and communities. The NEA extends its work through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector. To join the discussion on how art works, visit the NEA at arts.gov.
Arts Midwest promotes creativity, nurtures cultural leadership, and engages people in meaningful arts experiences, bringing vitality to Midwest communities and enriching people’s lives. Based in Minneapolis, Arts Midwest connects the arts to audiences throughout the nine-state region of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. One of six non-profit regional arts organization in the United States, Arts Midwest’s history spans more than 25 years. For more information please visit artsmidewest.org.


Last updated 7/17/2012
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