Cross Plains Public Library (TX)

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The Cross Plains Public Library is a recipient of a grant of $5,000 to host the NEA Big Read in March of 2017. A program of the National Endowment for the Arts, the NEA Big Read broadens our understanding of our world, our communities, and ourselves through the joy of sharing a good book.  The NEA Big Read in Cross Plains and also in Coleman will focus on “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald.   In 2012 Cross Plains and Coleman studied the works of Edgar Allen Poe, and in 2014 both communities studied Charles Portis' “True Grit.”  For this Big Read, the schools in Santa Anna and Panther Creek will join both Coleman and Cross Plains.

Chairperson Michelle Kaiser stated, “We are always excited to participate in the NEA Big Read and we are honored to have our friends at the Coleman Public Library join us once again.  Look forward to some fun events and deep discussion about “The Great Gatsby” and that era in history.  At present, we are planning a program on “Riders on the Orphan Train” in partnership with the Historical Commission, and hope to repeat our sold-out luncheon and cooking demonstration with Sharon Riley and/or her granddaughter Alex Terrell.  The committee will be busy confirming plans, so be sure to watch our Facebook page and our website for details in the fall, as we gear up for the month-long celebration.”

Jane Chu, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, said, “I have the opportunity to travel around the country and see the way the arts can inspire, allow for reflection, and create new experiences. I look forward to the creative ways these 77 organizations will bring their communities together around a great work of literature through their participation in the NEA Big Read.”

Managed by Arts Midwest, the NEA Big Read offers grants to support innovative community reading programs designed around a single book. The program supports organizations across the country in developing community-wide reading programs which encourage reading and participation by diverse audiences. Organizations selected to participate in the NEA Big Read receive a grant, access to online training resources and opportunities, and educational and promotional materials designed to support widespread community involvement.