High schoolers to participate in Rock ‘n Read Marathon at Edmonds Bookshop

Some people may believe that high school students — immersed in their fast-paced world of text-messaging, Facebook and all things Internet-related — no longer have time to read a book.

Meadowdale High School Librarian Rita Ireland is out to prove them wrong.

Starting at this Friday, March 4 through Sunday, March 6, more than 100 students from Meadowdale and Edmonds-Woodway high schools will participate in the Rock ‘n Read Marathon, a 55-hour readathon at the Edmonds Bookshop.

It works like this: Students sign up for a half-hour time slot, during which they read a book while sitting in a rocking chair in the Bookshop window. It’s all part of Ireland’s idea to involve high schoolers in what has become more of an elementary school tradition: Celebrating Dr. Suess’s March 2 birthday with classroom costumes and door decorations, which may seem a bit, well, juvenile for older kids.

The marathon’s purpose is “to provide hope to the community that many of our students are readers….who love to immerse themselves into a good book,” Ireland wrote in an email describing the project. “It may be a dying art for some, and in our fast-paced, multi-tasking, info-glut world, many kids do slow down to read too. Why? Thanks to families raising good readers, quality books in our libraries and connecting the right book that hooks a student’s imagination and interest.”

Numerous Edmonds businesses and organizations made donations to create a large street banner announcing the event: Beresford Law, Edmonds Bookshop, Resident Cheesemonger, Running in Motion, Blue Fish Jewelry, Twist Vinyassa Yoga, Arista’s, Demitri’s and the Meadowdale High Parent Resource Group. In addition, the following establishments are supplying treats and coffee during the three-day marathon: Walnut Street Coffee, Red Twig, Edmonds Bakery and Tully’s.

So expect to see the first rock ‘n readers in the Bookshop window at 10 a.m. Friday, although Ireland said that some former Edmonds School District elementary teachers are taking the first slots, as students are still in class at that time. The event will end at 5 p.m. Sunday.



  1. Thanks for the great article!
    Almost all half hour slots are filled now.
    The kids came through!

    Don’t forget to add that Running in Motion also helped pay for the banner too!


  2. What an amazing event! Such a great way to bring the community together through books. And the fact that teens are involved makes it that much more impressive!

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