Curtis Helps Celebrate Super Bowl 50’s Focus on Early Literacy!


Saturday Barbershop Event Promotes ‘Read Where You Are’ and My Brother’s Keeper; Sunday Event for 500 Families at Children’s Fairyland Plus A Celebration at The Fox Theater for Early Literacy Nonprofits featuring a Musical Performance by Wyclef Jean

SAN FRANCISCO – The Super Bowl 50 Host Committee is putting early literacy on sports biggest stage a week before the Big Game by hosting three high-profile weekend events in Oakland with ACTING U.S. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION, DR. JOHN B. KING, JR. and a number of literary, sports, and musical celebrities.

On Saturday, Acting Secretary King will host a ‘Read Where You Are’ event at People’s Barber and Shop teaming up with the Host Committee, First Book, East Bay Community Foundation, OAKLAND MAYOR LIBBY SCHAAF and JUSTIN TUCK in support of President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) initiative to raise awareness about the importance of opportunities for children to read whenever and wherever they are.

At this event, First Book will announce a new initiative answering the Read Where You Are call to action. In addition, Acting Secretary King will issue a challenge to all communities to pitch in to this effort with innovative and easy solutions in their cities to create more literacy-rich environments where kids are.

On Sunday, The Re(a)d Zone, the Host Committee’s early literacy initiative, will host 500 Bay Area families for a day-long community benefit event in celebration of literacy at America’s oldest storybook theme park, Children’s Fairyland. In addition to the park’s many attractions, children and adults alike will enjoy story hour and appearances with author MICHAEL DAHL and professional athletes JAMES AND ERSON, SHAYNE SKOV, JUSTIN TUCK, and KRISTI YAMAGUCHI. Families will also get a cooking demonstration from Food Network celebrity CHEF CURTIS AIKEN, whose own literacy journey is the inspiration behind his latest cookbook, ‘ABC Soup’. All families that attend will receive books and family literacy resources, including a subscription to event sponsor myON’s digital library of more than 5,000 titles and literacy tools.

The day concludes with a Thank You party at the Fox Theater for 1,000 staff, volunteers and funders of more than 25 Bay Area nonprofits who received more than $800,000 in grants as part of The Re(a)d Zone last summer. The program will feature new early literacy announcements from local, regional, and national partners, including The Host Committee’s commitment to train and deploy a significant number of the 5,000 volunteers recruited for Super Bowl 50 as tutors for struggling readers. Acting Secretary King will close the program with remarks about the Administration’s priorities, especially as it relates to summer and early literacy. Multi-platinum, Grammy award-winning artist, songwriter and producer, humanitarian and philanthropist WYCLEF JEAN will perform.

3 Weekend Events in Oakland With Acting U.S. Secretary of Education to Celebrate Super Bowl 50’s Focus on Early Literacy

3PM-4PM, Saturday, January 30, 2016
10AM-4PM and 4:30PM-8PM, Sunday, January 31, 2016

John King, Acting US Secretary of Education

Libby Schaaf, Mayor of Oakland
James Head, East Bay Community Foundation
Wyclef Jean, Artist, Songwriter, and Producer
Justin Tuck, Oakland Raiders
Shayne Skov, San Francisco 49ers
James Anderson, New Orleans Saints
Kristi Yamaguchi, Always Dream Foundation
Chef Curtis Aikens, Literacy Advocate and Former Food Network Chef and Mrs. Obama’s Chef for Healthy Lunch Time Challenge
Todd Brekhus, President, myON
Ralph Smith, Managing Director, Campaign for Grade-Level Reading
C.J. Hirschfield, Executive Director, Children’s Fairyland
Jason Trimiew, VP of Community Relations, Super Bowl 50 Host Committee
*Specific VIP guest appearances cannot be guaranteed.

People’s Barber and Shop, 2337 Broadway #101, Oakland, CA 94607 (3PM-4PM, Saturday, January 30, 2016)
Children’s Fairyland, 699 Bellevue Ave, Oakland, CA 94610 (10AM-4PM, Sunday, January 31, 2016)
Fox Theater, 1807 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94612 (4:30PM-8PM, Sunday, January 31, 2016)

About 50 Fund
50 Fund is the signature philanthropic initiative of the San Francisco Bay Area Super Bowl 50 Host Committee. Its goal is to help close the opportunity gap that exists for Bay Area children, youth and young adults living in low-income communities. Through its grantmaking programs, 50 Fund will support organizations and initiatives making a difference, tackling big issues and scaling their impact. For more information, visit

About the San Francisco Bay Area Super Bowl 50 Host Committee:
Working in partnership with Bay Area public officials and the NFL, the San Francisco Bay Area Super Bowl 50 Host Committee is responsible for Super Bowl 50 and its celebration elements, including the Super Bowl Village, public e xhibits and planning of game day logistics. The Host Committee seeks to make Super Bowl 50 the most giving ever, and is investing in Bay Area community initiatives and high-performing nonprofits through the 50 Fund, its signature philanthropic fund. To be hosted in the state-of-the-art Levi’s® Stadium in Santa Clara in 2016, Super Bowl 50 will be celebrated through a series of events that showcase all the Bay Area has to offer. For more information, visit

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