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This week organizers of Glenview Elementary’s Read-A-Thon, Co-Chairs Megan Simmons & Suzanne McKaig-Laber, announced that the festival raised more than $35,000. And the donations are still coming in. Eric Londgren, a Glenview Elementary parent who photographed the event, shares his images with OaklanderOnline.

Glenview Elementary students make bookmarks and door hangers in the library.

The Dr. Seuss classic, “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!” marked the theme of Glenview Elementary’s 12th Annual Read-A-Thon, which kicked off on what would have been author’s 106th birthday. For two-weeks, students gathered sponsors for their after-school reading.

Readers log their book hours to raise money for school enrichment programs.

Back in February, Oakland Tribune columnist Martin Snapp posted on his blog that one Glenview Elementary’s second grade teacher reprised his promise from last year. Mr. Miller pledged that if his students clocked 2,000 hours, he would shave his head.

Snapp quoted Mr. Miller: ”We won’t have to sweep up afterward. The kids think a clump of my hair would be a great souvenir, so they scoop it up as soon as it hits the ground.”

The Glenview Elementary PTA organized the event to "to inspire the importance of reading as a fundamental skill."

The culminating event came on March 16 with “Celebration of Literacy Day.” Students sporting their PJs brought sleeping bags, pillows and books to every classroom, as if to stage a Read-In. Every hour students spent with a book translated into funds for enrichment programs that were impacted by state budget cuts.

KPIX-TV (Channel 5) anchor Wendy Tokuda made an appearance on Celebrating Literacy Day.

Neighbors, parents and local celebrities came out in support of literacy. Glenview resident Jon Carroll, columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, dropped by Mr. Miller’s portable to read. He shared a picture book about a farmer named Mr. McGreeley, whose garden had a bad case of hungry bunnies.

San Francisco Chronicle columnist Jon Carroll reads to Mr. Miller and his class.

As for their goal, Mr. Miller’s class fared very well in its efforts. They came just a hair short of the 2,000 needed to win the bet.

“But, I figured in this economy we did really well,” Mr. Miller told the class. “So soon the lady who owns the Cutting Place will come by to shave it off.”

Carroll introduced himself as someone who has loved his job for thirty years. “I like to write about my cats,” Carroll shared with the group. One student responded, “Will you write about the Read-A-Thon?”

And the next week, he kept his promise. The March 26 issue of the Montclairion pictured an exuberant crowd of second graders surrounding Mr. Miller’s new buzz cut. Eric Londgren returned to photograph the event:

LeAnn from the Cutting Place performed the head-shaving in Mr. Miller's classroom.

The hair shearing continued as second graders looked on.

The last lock of hair was shorn…

The students sweep up their souvenirs…

Students swept up their souvenirs…

…and Mr. Miller has another year to grow until his next Read-A-Thon challenge.

Overall, Glenview Elementary’s Read-A-Thon was a success, surpassing its goal by more than $5,000. The students brought in more than 90% of the total raised; other sponsors included businesses like Ultimate Grounds. The neighborhood coffee shop hosted the kick-off event, which donated a coffee and bagel for each $20 donation.

Event Co-Chair Suzanne McKaig-Laber said this was her second year participating in the event. She said she appreciated that the Read-A-Thon spans two weeks.

“It’s very cool to have this concentrated period of time for the community businesses to get involved in donations,” she said, “and kids to really hunker down and focus on reading as a priority. This event really got my 1st grade daughter reading on her own which was exciting.”

McKaig-Laber also noted that the Celebration of Literacy Day was a highlight. “Hearing personal stories about how moved the readers were,” she recalled, “and seeing how inspired the students were made for a truly energizing community event.”

the oakland marathon returned after 25 years

Mile 8, 9 a.m.: This paparazzo shot is near the apex of the Oakland Marathon route, as runners puffed up to the water station on Mountain Blvd. Oakland native MvO is pictured just behind the passing car. While a student at Montera Jr. High, she couldn't run up the hill due to asthma. Yesterday she completed all 26.2 miles of the marathon course. "I enjoyed seeing the wide spectrum of Oakland characters cheering from the sidelines," she said.

more than 6,500 people signed up for runs, selling out every race in the weekend festival

At Mile 26, Native American drummers cheered on a family member named Lisa, who was due down 19th Street at any moment. No sign, however, of MvO.

family, friends and neighbors showed their support

OaklanderOnline missed MvO wrap her race…but celebrated with her hours later at Marzano's on Park Blvd. The energy at the Finish Line could only be described as ebullient.

the city opened its gates to the positive

Runners who had already completed the race jumped in from the sidelines, seeing their friends to the end.

and ushered in the fastest marathon time at 2:31:38

At the moment this photo was taken, a full marathon runner bolted into a sprint. He sailed like a bird over the Finish, his arms extended like wings.

and the last full runner in just over 8 hours

Lotsa love in Oakland's downtown streets. One sideline supporter donning a wide-brimmed sun hat teared up at the sight. "Every one here has a story," she said, "And there are so many stories!"

one missed photo: bystander whose leather jacket, afro and cigarette recalled oakland in the ’60s

Not sure what the story was with these foil people. But they were an essential aspect of Oakland's character spectrum.

another missed image: police officer high-fiving a little kid as he ran by

As this runner's shirt indicated, this marathon was all about The Town.

the race’s course cast a wide reach over town

Even the spirit of Rollie Fingers showed his face on this fan's shirt, which welcomed runners around the last corner of the marathon.

connecting roads and minds in big strides

Van Jones, founder of the Oakland-based Green For All and Ella Baker Center for Human Rights received the 2010 NAACP Image Award last week. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People honored the former “green jobs” advisor for his innovative work in social justice.

His book “The Green Collar Economy” promoted the notion that blue-collar workers could start and sustain green development. While at the White House, Van Jones worked on several green technology projects, including a rooftop garden installation with DC Green Works. Then Glenn Beck’s whole Nothing Storm descended upon the media and Van Jones left office.

No hard feelings, though. Van Jones “recently landed at the Center for American Progress, a Washington think-tank, and at Princeton University, where he will teach environmental and economic policy.” As the text of his acceptance speech indicates, he has nothing but love for others despite the setbacks:

(Transcript of Van Jones’s speech accepting 2010 NAACP President’s Award at the Image Awards)

VAN JONES: First of all giving honor to God and also to my mother Loretta Jean Kirkendall Jones–let me get it right. Get that right, straight! I want to thank my beautiful wife and our two boys Matai and Cabral. I want to thank the staff and supporters of Green for All, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and Color of Change, incredible freedom fighting organizations. I also want to give a shout out and a salute to President Barack Obama. President Barack Obama who is a world-class leader, a man who volunteered to be the captain of the Titanic after it hit the iceberg, and we’re still floating, and we’re still floating. Let’s stay with this president!

And I also want to thank the NAACP for encouraging me to continue in my quest. It took a lot of courage for Ben Jealous to nominate me for this award and to give to me this award. I appreciate that courage, and I appreciate the courage of the NAACP.

I have had 1,000 defeats in this past year, but I had one victory, and it’s the most important victory to me: I don’t hate anybody. I’m not mad at anybody, and I still believe in the politics of hope. I still believe! You can’t take that from me. You can’t take it from me.

And I know one thing, we have people in every community in America right now watching this program who don’t have jobs, who are suffering, who are afraid, living in economic uncertainty, and I know there’s a future out there for them where they get a chance to make the products of tomorrow. If we want the jobs of tomorrow, we have to make the products of tomorrow. There’s somebody right now who’s in Detroit, and they know how to make cars. They’re a skilled machinist, but they’re idle. Let them make the wind turbines and the smart batteries and the solar panels to repower this country. Let them work! Give them hope! Give them the opportunity!

There’s somebody right now who’s living in Appalachia, who’s living in rural America, who’s afraid she’s going to lose her land because she doesn’t have enough sources of income. Let her put those wind turbines up. Let her grow an energy crop. Give her the opportunity to hold on to her land and be a part of this energy revolution. Let’s get everybody involved in repowering America in a clean way.

And for a country that beautiful, that prosperous, that innovative, that united, I am willing to walk through fire and brimstone and fire and brimstone until we get the job done.

The last thing I want to say is this. To my fellow countryman, Mr. Glenn Beck, I see you and I love you, brother. I love you and you cannot do anything about it. I love you and you cannot do anything about it. Let’s be one country! Let’s be one country. Let’s get the job done.