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AR Kids Read: Celebrity Spelling Bee

AR Kids Read is back again with its annual Celebrity Spelling Bee that raises funds and awareness for our one-on-one reading tutoring program. The event, Spellebration, will occur Thursday, April 2nd, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Albert Pike Masonic Center. Spelling Bee guests enjoy a cocktail hour and silent auction with heavy hors d’oeuvres from Chef Donnie Ferneau’s Cathead’s Diner followed by an on-stage team spelling competition – each team composed of a corporate sponsor and local media celebrity. This year AR Kids Read will honor Hugh and Michelle McDonald as recipients of their Community Leader Award.

The McDonald’s noted, “One of the things in retirement we receive the most satisfaction [from] is [serving as] volunteer reading tutors for elementary school children through AR Kids Read.  We’re in our 4th year at Stephens Elementary in the Little Rock School District and have thoroughly enjoyed building relationships with students and hopefully been a net positive influence on their chances of being successful in school and life beyond school.”

“We are excited to host Spellebration and recognize the McDonalds and our Tutor of the Year! Our community members are vital to the success of our work to build stronger readers. This will be a fun night of networking and recognition, and several of our lucky guests will go home with fantastic silent auction items,” said Dionne Jackson, the organization’s executive director.

About AR Kids Read: AR Kids Read’s mission is to improve the future of Arkansas’s children and families by advancing literacy education so that all children can read on grade level by the end of third grade. AR Kids Read recruits and provides training and ongoing support for more than 160 volunteers who tutor students in 24 schools in Pulaski County. Each tutor also gives their students books provided by AR Kids Read for their home libraries. After school and during the summer, AR Kids Read partners with local organizations, such as Life Skills for Youth and Tendaji CDC, to offer literacy support.

For Spellebration sponsorship information visit

Inviting Arkansas

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