Over 2,000 girls and boys were recognized on Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium on Sunday, August 22nd for reading 1000 minutes this past spring and summer in the 12th Annual Kernels Summer Reading Program, presented by Toyota Financial Services and supported by The Gazette, Rockwell Collins, and Copyworks. Cedar Rapids Kernels players and Kernels Mascot, Mr. Shucks, greeted the 1000 Minute Readers in right-center field to sign autographs and pose for pictures with them for 25 minutes prior to the game. The girls and boys and their families were then cheered by the crowd as they paraded around the Perfect Game Field.
Kernels players and Kernels Mascot Mr. Shucks visited a record 54 elementary schools throughout the eastern Iowa Corridor this past spring and summer to encourage over 25,000 students to stimulate their imaginations, discover new worlds, and make new friends through reading. Children were rewarded each 250 minutes that they read culminating with the Reader Recognition Day at the ballpark. After reading 250 minutes, the children reached 1st base and were rewarded with a free ticket to a future Kernels game and their name listed in the Cedar Rapids Gazette. After completing the next 250 minutes and arriving at second base, the kids received a free kid’s meal to Fazoli’s. The third leg, which takes the readers to third base and a total of 750 minutes of reading, rewards the readers with a Kernels equipment basket. Finally, after reaching home plate and 1,000 minutes read, children received a Kernels jersey and the opportunity to meet the players.
The Kernels congratulate all of the children who participated in the 12th Annual Kernels Summer Reading Program and thank 12th Year Presenting Sponsor Toyota Financial Services and contributing sponsors The Gazette, Rockwell Collins, and Copyworks for providing awesome rewards to the kids for their fantastic achievements.