Jul 28, 2014
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The Great Read 2013 to Focus on Lincoln

This year, the literacy program has a new format, new partners.

The Great Read 2013 to Focus on Lincoln

Editor's note: The following is a press release issued by Plainfield School District 202: 

Abraham Lincoln’s contributions to American history are too monumental for just one book. 

So, as part of the 2013 Great Read community literacy program, Plainfield-area community members are encouraged to read any books about the 16th president and take part in numerous fun, historical and educational programs dedicated to Lincoln. 

This year’s Great Read program is very timely, since 2013 is the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, one of Lincoln’s greatest achievements. The Emancipation Proclamation led to the passage of the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1865, which abolished slavery.


The Great Read 2013 has compiled a list of books about President Lincoln appropriate for all age groups (see the PDF attached to this article). The Great Read 2013 also features several fun and educational programs for adults and students about Lincoln, including book talks, movies, an art contest for students and adults and live dramatizations about Lincoln’s life. 

This year’s Great Read Opening Night will be held at 7 p.m. February 21, 2013 at the Joliet Barnes and Noble store, 2621 Plainfield Rd. (across from the Louis Joliet Mall).

Abraham Lincoln (played by Max Daniels) will host a “press conference” and address the state of the nation during his presidency, with Mrs. Lincoln (Donna Daniels) also on hand. A Nook e-Reader will be given away to one lucky attendee. 

The Great Read Finale will be held at 7 p.m. May 2, 2013 at the Fountaindale Public Library, 300 W. Briarcliff Road, Bolingbrook.

The Daniels will again portray the Lincolns – this time as the Lincolns prepare to go to Ford’s Theatre where the President will be assassinated that evening. The Lincolns reflect upon their life together, their children, the ending of the Civil War and the President’s political career. 

The Great Read 2013 also plans to host showings of Steven Spielberg’s award-winning movie, “Lincoln” at several locations, pending release of the movie in late winter/early spring 2013.

Please visit The Great Read web site for a complete list of books, events and program information: http://www.psd202.org/greatread 


The Great Read was created in 2004 to promote literacy, reading, conversation and community in the greater Plainfield area. 

Since its inception, The Great Read has focused on a single book each year that connected to the community, a literary theme or an issue important at the time, said Ceil Carey, Plainfield Public Library’s director of Outreach Services.

The Plainfield Public Library is a founding member of The Great Read program, along with the Plainfield School District. 

“But President Lincoln had, and continues to have such an immense impact on our country that we couldn’t limit ourselves to just one book this year,” Carey said.


The Great Read began in September 2004 as Reading Across Plainfield. That year, a panel hosted by the Plainfield School District and Plainfield Public Library debated the theme of government censorship as illustrated in Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury’s science fiction classic.

In 2008, Reading Across Plainfield became The Great Read and new partners from Joliet and Bolingbrook joined the program to encourage broader community participation, better reflect the areas served and emphasize the program’s literary focus. 

This year, The Great Read added the Shorewood-Troy Public Library and Joliet Junior College to its list of participants. Both will host Great Read 2013 activities this spring.

“We are very excited to welcome Joliet Junior College and Shorewood-Troy to The Great Read to further promote and support literacy in our entire community,” Carey said.

The Great Read 2013 is proudly presented by Plainfield District 202; the Plainfield Public Library; the Joliet Public Library; the Fountaindale Public Library; the Shorewood-Troy Public Library; Joliet Junior College; Plainfield Township; and the Joliet-area Barnes and Noble stores.

The Great Read is also supported by generous grants from the Plainfield Foundation for Excellence ( www.psd202.org/foundation); the Friends of the Plainfield Public Library; and additional funding from Enterprise Publications and participating member organizations.

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