JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (April 17, 2007) - Members of the ETSU men's and women's basketball teams spent some time off the court Tuesday afternoon giving back to the community by participating at an All-Star Reading Night event at North Side Elementary in Johnson City.
Junior Jenny Norman (Peachtree City, Ga.), freshman Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.), and assistant coaches DeShawne Blocker and Will Bailey took part in the after school activity as they read their favorite children's story to a group of North Side students and their families.
"It's important for parents to find time and read to their children," said Blocker. "By doing so, it encourages them to learn more and also makes reading fun."
Three times a year the elementary school holds a family reading night, and this month they decided to add an athletic theme to the function. Coaches and players from ETSU and
Each student was given a scorecard before the activity, and after listening to a story they received a sticker to place on their card. When the students filled up the card they would take it to the library and turn it in for a book of their choice, which in return promoted more reading. The students also had opportunities to meet the athletes and coaches by receiving autographs and pictures.
"We were happy to have the schools join us today in reaching out to the children, and we hope this can start a partnership in the community," said North Side principal Richard Church. "We thought by bringing in role models such as the student-athletes and coaches, that it would generate more excitement for the children to read."
For more information on the ETSU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics' community service efforts, visit www.ETSUBucs.com.