Newport Beach-based The Literacy Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to enabling disadvantaged youth to increase their reading skill levels, and the Angels Baseball Foundation, came together at the 6th Annual Readers in the Outfield event to honor 100 students from schools in the Santa Ana Unified and Anaheim City School Districts who recently graduated from TLP’s reading program.
On April 27, the young graduates were transported by school bus to the morning event at Angel Stadium.
After running through a sea of high-fives, the kids were seated at tables among volunteers, sponsors and Angels alumni including second baseman Bobby Grich (1977-1986), first and second baseman Rod Carew (1979-1985), and pitcher Clyde Wright (1966-1973), along with Angels Chairman Dennis Kuhl, a resident of Newport Beach.
They all enjoyed a traditional lunch featuring Angel Dogs and chips, and showed off their new reading skills by playing the New Phonics Game.
Students also had a chance to win prizes including an autographed baseball and autographed pictures, participate in a prize wheel, face painting and outdoor game activities. Every student left the stadium with a four pack of tickets to a future Angels game.
Before the fun began, Angels alumni took the stage to congratulate the readers and share personal stories about how reading has impacted their lives.
“The key to going on to college and finding a job is all about reading,” said Grich. “That’s a skill you can teach yourself. You can get books and read. You just need ambition and skills and the ability to read. The possibilities are endless. Reading is one of the most important things you can do in your life.”
“I was in the hospital and could not go anywhere, but I had books,” said Carew. “Keep your brain active, keep feeding it, because the more you read the more you learn.”
For more information, visit LiteracyProjectFoundation.org.