Lakers Celebrate New School Year with a Lakers Reading Room Dedication

James Worthy, Brian Cook, and the Laker girls joined together on September 23, 2004 to help the children of Monterey Park celebrate the start of a new school year. The Lakers organization dedicated a Lakers Reading Room at the Boys and Girls Club of West San Gabriel Valley, which was the setting for the Laker representatives and children to share time together during a Reading Time Out.

The afternoon began with Worthy, Cook, and the Laker girls surprising a group of 300 children waiting at Ynez Elementary School. From there, they all marched together in a Read to Achieve Parade to the Boys and Girls Club for a pep rally in the gymnasium. The Club’s Executive Director Dan Haren introduced the Laker guests and Monterey Park’s newly elected mayor, Mike Eng, all of whom addressed the excited crowd, encouraging the students to read in order to gain knowledge, to expand their minds, and to open new doors for themselves.

Following the pep rally, 16 pre-selected Boys and Girls Club members were given Read to Achieve T-shirts and invited to join the Lakers for a ribbon cutting ceremony at the new Lakers Reading Room. Afterwards, guests entered the Reading Room where the Laker guests read aloud a book called Dirt Boy by Erik Jon Slangerup to the children. Each child who participated in the day’s events received a Lakers backpack filled with notebooks, pens, markers, and other school supplies generously donated by Staples. Pepsi generously provided juice and water for the event. Club members also received admission vouchers to the L.A. Zoo courtesy of East West Bank.