Intro: Last week, the Indianapolis Colts and Blue teamed up with law firm Faegre Baker Daniels to celebrate Dr. Seuss' birthday by hosting Blue's 2013 "Read Across America" school show at 10 Central Indiana elementary schools.
Colts Community Relations
INDIANAPOLIS — On Monday, February 25, the Indianapolis Colts mascot Blue kicked off "Read Across America Week," presented by Faegre Baker Daniels. "Read Across America" was established in 1998 by the National Education Association (NEA) as a celebration of Dr. Seuss' birthday, which falls on March 2, and as a means of focusing schools around the nation on the importance of reading.
Throughout the week, Blue visited 10 Central Indiana elementary schools and brought Dr. Seuss' classic story "Green Eggs and Ham" to life for students, but with a twist. Blue read "Green Eggs and Spam" because he ate all the ham before attending each school. The program featured bright visuals and humor mixed with the valuable message that reading is not only important, but can also be fun. To help illustrate the story, Blue brought along a Colts player as a surprise guest at a few schools.
On Monday, February 25, NT Josh Chapman kicked off Blue's show at Van Buren Elementary in Plainfield, Ind. Before the reading began, Chapman helped Blue judge a touchdown dance contest to get the kids excited and energized. After the show, Chapman talked about his favorite books with the students.
The following day, DT Drake Nevis visited Poston Road Elementary in Martinsville, Ind. to be Blue's next guest reader. After the show he asked kids questions from the book and Blue distributed prizes. The following day, TE Weslye Saunders visited Amy Beverland Elementary School in Indianapolis. Like his teammates did the previous days, Saunders read to students and tested his bravery by sampling Blue's green eggs and spam.
OG Joe Reitz made an appearance on Wednesday at St. Luke Catholic School in Indianapolis. His visit included several humorous moments for the teachers and students as Blue showered Reitz with silly string and CO2 from a fire extinguisher. Blue tried the same stunts with OT Anthony Castonzo at Bunker Hill Elementary in Indianapolis on Thursday, but Castonzo outsmarted Blue and turned the fire extinguisher on him.
The final player to make an appearance was TE Dwayne Allen who visited New Augusta South Elementary in Indianapolis on Thursday and Winding Ridge School of Inquiry in Indianapolis on Friday. Allen shared that Dr. Seuss was one of his favorite authors growing up and "The Cat in the Hat" was his favorite book.
Blue also performed his "Read Across America" show at Hendricks Elementary, Waverly Elementary and Wheeler Elementary Schools. In addition, each school library received a book donation, courtesy of Faegre Baker Daniels.
Throughout the week, all the players shared one piece of advice with students: reading is important in any dream you want to pursue. For example, if you want to be a football player, you must know how to read because knowing the playbook is essential to being successful on the field.
Check out photos from "Read Across America" here.*Watch the video from the final "Read Across America" visit with Dwayne Allen here*.