Press Release:

The NEA Big Read Comes Through!

Each fall, the Mid-Hudson region celebrates the power and joy of literature as the community engages in the annual NEA Big Read, and this year is no exception. Operating within strict health guidelines, the Big Read takes place from October 4 through November 7 in libraries, schools, parks, and book clubs across the region.

The five week program, coordinated by the Poughkeepsie Public Library District, presents 60 public events organized by thirty-five partner organizations. The featured literature this year is geobiologist Hope Jahren’s memoir Lab Girl. The companion book for middle school readers is The Light in the Lake by Sarah Baughman. Many partner organizations are offering creative virtual events in addition to hybrid events that can accommodate some in-person participation and numerous outdoor activities. The Library District’s website offers many ideas and resources for hiking, nature journaling, and fun family adventures.

The Big Read Kick-Off event on Sunday, October 4, at 2:30 pm, at Boardman Road Branch Library features ecologist and researcher Dr. Lynn Christenson of Vassar College. This event, like many of this year’s programs, will be available virtually as well as in-person (for a limited number of attendees). Registration is required for nearly all programs to accommodate sharing of meeting links and appropriate attendance guidelines. Other scheduled events focus on topics such as invasive plant species, Poughkeepsie’s trees, growing garlic, women in science, botanical art, landscape restoration, and environmental documentary films.

2020 is the fourteenth year that the Poughkeepsie Public Library District has coordinated the community-wide reading program. The NEA Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. The Big Read is designed to broaden our understanding of our world, our communities, and ourselves through the joy of sharing a good book. Local book clubs are encouraged to participate and can register their interest at https://poklib.org/big-read-book-club-contest/

Boardman Road Branch Library is at 141 Boardman Road in Poughkeepsie. For more information on the NEA Big Read 2020, follow the Library District on Facebook, visit https://poklib.org/events/2020-big-read/ or call (845)485-3445 x 3702.