Dashawn Fair’s annual Reading is Fun Block Party encourages a love of books
Music greeted every passerby walking by the Homer Wheaton Park on the afternoon of Saturday, Sept. 15, where the second Reading is Fun Block Party welcomed book donations from the public. Bounce houses, music and refreshments were served while books for all ages stacked upon multiple tables until 3 p.m.
The project began when Dashawn Fair, the event coordinator, realized that he wanted to promote reading across different households.
“The purpose of the event is to give books into children’s homes,” Fair said.
He came to understand that not every child has books, access to the library or regularly reads.
“So I figured that I would create an event that would be fun and enjoyable,” he said.
By the conclusion of his event, every child would leave with a book or two. Maybe even more.
“And when they come home with it, what would they do?” he asks: “Read them.”
Fair is a local author based in Syracuse. He has also published four novels also set in the city. A writer of urban fiction and romance since 2013, he noticed he began to gain notoriety for his writing and thought he could give back to the community through this event.
“I get a lot of inquiries from people wanting to write books. I figure that people aren’t sure about the book format, so I want to bring reading back,” he said of his work and how it related to the event.
His long-term goal is to be picked up by the city as an established festival during the summer and to increase reading. The event accepts books and volunteer additions as well.
— Article and photos by Lianza Reyes, The Stand Staff reporter