The Seattle Public Library and Seattle Seahawks unveiled a limited edition Seahawks Library Card today as part of a new campaign called "Two Teams, One Goal" to promote libraries and literacy. The event took place at Seattle's Central Library, 1000 Fourth Ave.
The Sea Gals helped kick off the press event performing to Macklemore's "Can't Hold Us." The dance ended with a thunderous "SEA…HAWKS!" chant by Library patrons.
"Seattle is known as one of the most literate cities in America, and we also have the best fans in the country," said Mayor Ed Murray. "Today's announcement is a perfect partnership that is distinctly Seattle. As the new season kicks off, I'm excited for folks to showcase their Seahawks pride with their new Library cards. Go Hawks!"
Seattle City Librarian Marcellus Turner said he is excited the Seahawks have teamed up with the Library on this citywide educational initiative. "Getting a Library card is an important first step to discovering the world of books and the joy of reading," he said. "Libraries are often where we have our first reading experience outside of home and school."
Turner said the Seahawks Library Cards are available at all 27 Library locations in celebration of September's National Library Card Sign-up Month. Approximately 30,000 cards were printed through the support of The Seattle Public Library Foundation.
Turner said that a Library card provides access to a wealth of resources and services that residents might not know about. "You can download free songs, books and magazines; you can get free passes to EMP and other museums; you can check out a Wi-Fi hotspot for three weeks and much more," Turner said. "The Library also offers hundreds of free educational classes, musical performances and many other activities for children and adults every month. We even served as a gathering spot for fans during Seahawks playoff games."
Seahawks defensive tackle Brandon Mebane and his daughter Mahailey talked about the importance of libraries in their own lives and some of their favorite books.
"Reading is something me and Mahailey can do together," Mebane said. "I can almost recite 'Brown Bear Brown Bear' by heart. It is one of her favorite books."
Research shows that young children who are read to regularly and have books in their home, have a head start on reading and literacy skills when they enter school. Family members are often a child's first teacher.
Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett noted it is important for parents to take an active role in their children's reading development.
"Reading is very important to our family, especially my girls," Bennett said. "I'm looking forward to discovering new characters like Ramona, Heidi and Nancy Drew."
Seahawks owner and philanthropist, Paul G. Allen, is a major supporter of The Seattle Public Library. His mother, the late Faye Allen, was a lover of books who inspired her son to be an avid reader, and the Seattle Central Library is home of the Faye G. Allen Children's Center.
"My mother was passionate about reading and believed in the power of books," Allen said. "She would have been gratified to see the Seahawks and The Seattle Public Library working together."
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Michael Bennett and Brandon Mebane helped unveil the limited edition Seahawks Library Card today as part of a new campaign called "Two Teams, One Goal" to promote libraries and literacy.