Waimea second-grader wins trip through summer reading program

  • Waimea second-grader Gianna Zarley, center with balloon hat, won a trip for her family through the statewide 2019 Summer Reading Program. (Courtesy photo)

WAIMEA — The Hawaii State Public Library System announced the grand prize winner of its 2019 Summer Reading Program Grand Prize Drawing.

Gianna Zarley from the Thelma Parker Memorial Public and School Library won four Alaska Airlines roundtrip tickets to anywhere Alaska Airlines flies.


Celebrating “A Universe of Stories,” Hawaii’s public libraries encouraged readers of all ages to learn about space, science fiction, the ancient Polynesian skill of wayfinding, and Hawaii’s role in astronomical research and discovery. Thousands of participants enjoyed books, ebooks, audiobooks, and more, logging a collective total of over 16.3 million minutes read, attended programs and completed fun activities in HSPLS branches from June 1 to July 13.

Over 19,800 patrons of all ages blasted off into reading this summer, making them eligible for the grand prize drawing. Public libraries across the state hosted family-friendly activities to encourage adult, teen and children readers to join the 2019 “A Universe of Stories!” which was funded by the Friends of the Library of Hawaii and their Summer Reading sponsors.

Waimea Elementary School second-grade student Zarley was surprised at Tuesday’s presentation event at the Thelma Parker Public and School Library.

State Librarian Stacey A. Aldrich, along with Nainoa Mau, executive director of the Friends of the Library of Hawaii, and Heidi Feeney, Kona Airport station manager for Alaska Airlines, presented Zarley, along with her parents Carol Hwang and Jon Zarley, with the four Alaska Airlines round-trip tickets.


“We are excited to celebrate the reading achievements of Gianna Zarley! We look forward to continuing to support all readers all year long!” Aldrich said.

“We wish the Zarley ohana happy travels and a mahalo nui to Alaska Airlines for their generosity and support of literacy among Hawaii’s keiki, teens, adults and kupuna through our public libraries,” Mau added.

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