The Reading Marathon encourages children to read 20 minutes each day for 30 days during the month of November. A reading log helps children track their reading. Children who complete the Reading Marathon and submit their reading log are awarded with a KUED Kids Adventure Pass, which provides free entrance to local museums, aviaries, and zoos, as well as a free book.
In 2017, for the first time, KUED hosted the 25th annual KUED Kids Reading Marathon Kickoff Party in conjunction with the Salt Lake Public Library’s STEM-Fest. More than 2,000 people joined 25 of KUED’s partnering organizations for science, technology, engineering, math and early literacy activities, and to meet their favorite PBS Kids characters. The combination of these two events also engaged a more diverse audience as we noted a wider variety of ages, ethnicities and abilities at the event compared to other events. Each child took home a book and a reading log, and in total Utah children read more than 2 million minutes during the KUED Reading Marathon in November 2017.
Additionally, KUED supports rural communities in Utah by offering support for Mini Reading Marathons allowing libraries, schools and community service organizations in rural communities the resources to host their own reading marathons and activities. Mini Reading Marathon support ranged from $100 to $500 and was used to promote the program, host kick of parties, purchase and distribute books to children, supply libraries with books and celebrate reading goal achievements.
Salt Lake County Reading Marathon participants celebrated the reading kick-off event on November 4, 2017. Twenty-five nonprofit and education organizations attended the event providing the more than 2,000 attendees engaging science, technology, engineering, art, math and literacy activities.