Celebrating Statehood Day, Lead Up’s Junior and Sophomore Leaders recently partnered with the Nebraska History museum and hosted a Read In at their “Witness the Weird” event. Stationed on all three floors of the museum, students enjoyed getting into character and bringing the books to life for younger audiences. Giving back by sharing the love of reading fits perfectly into Lead Up’s philosophy that reading is a prerequisite to success in college and career. This family friendly event included other activities such as a reenactment of the Pioneer Zephyr train cutting its own birthday cake, music played on a hand-crafted violin.

We interviewed the curator of education, Sharon Kennedy, about the event. Here is what she had to say:

Why is it important to you to incorporate young people and things like the “Read In” into your programming?

Read Aloud is part of a larger initiative to promote reading out loud for the young. Reading is knowledge and at the Nebraska History Museum, we are all about learning.

How does reading connect to the overall mission of the museum?

Our mission is to share information about Nebraska history which often requires reading.

Some of your current exhibits detail the history of Nebraska’s ethnically diverse populations, as well as the increase in diversity Nebraska as seen in recent decades – as a program that’s also focused on diversity, we were wondering what value you see in examining and focusing on this element of Nebraska.

Migration and diversity is what makes up our great state of Nebraska. It  is an important part of history and this history continues to the present.

How do you think the Lincoln/Nebraska community benefits from programming like “Witness the Weird” and the “Read In”?

Hopefully these events that include reading promote a curiosity in people to want to learn more about their state and its history.


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