Winning participants in “Bikes for Books” program receive their bikes

Post date: Jun 27, 2016 4:32:45 PM

On June 15th, Wells Elementary School held an assembly to draw winners in the “Bikes for Books” reading incentive program sponsored by the Grand Lodge of Masons in Maine and the Maine Masonic Charitable Foundation. In the drawing, nine boys and nine girls each went home for the summer with new Huffy bicycles plus helmets and t-shirts.

Since April, WES students from nine first and second grade classrooms participated in the two-month program coordinated by Literacy teacher Bonnie Esty and Dr. Claire Tusch of Ocean Lodge #142.

According to a program brochure, Bikes for Books is a statewide initiative “to foster literacy programs in schools and encourage healthy exercise.” Since 2007, the program has awarded 1,200 bicycles.

Over a two-month period, WES students read books, filled out accompanying tickets and wrote brief book reports then deposited their entries into a box in their classrooms. The more books they read, the greater the chance they had for winning a bike

“The children were very excited and very enthusiastic,” commented Assistant Principal of WES Ken Spinney after the drawing. “When they had their names called, they had big smiles on their faces.” According to Principal Marianne Horne the books read by the students totaled 2,090.

Representing Wells Ocean Lodge #142 at the drawing were Ben Davis, John Howarth, Claire Tusch, Ken Creed, Danny Fink, Jake Wiggin, and Wayne Smith.

“I think it speaks for itself,” said Smith when asked about the success of the reading incentive program that has generated numerous heartwarming stories. Smith added, “It is a fantastic program.”

Adults in the back row of the photo are (l to r) Bonnie Esty, Ken Creed, John Howarth, Wayne Smith Jake Wiggin (Master at Wells Ocean Lodge #142), Ben Davis, Dr. Claire Tusch (past Grand Master of the Masons in Maine), and Marianne Horne who drew the names of students in the Bikes for Books drawing at WES.