PUBLISHED: 5:17 PM on Wednesday, May 9, 2007
First Gentleman presents awards for annual Reading Rainbow writers, illustrators contest

Courtesy photo
  First Gentleman Todd Palin presented awards to first, second and third place Alaska winners April 23, at KTOO for the Reading Rainbow Young Writers and Illustrators Contest.
Entries from across Alaska came to KTOO / Alaska One this year for the 13th annual Reading Rainbow Young Writers & Illustrators Contest.

Sponsored by the award-winning PBS television series Reading Rainbow, the contest attracts more than 80 entries locally and more than 40,000 entries nationally each year. KTOO / Alaska One with more than 100 other PBS stations nationwide sponsor the contest. Kindergartners through third graders enter an original story with illustrations.

First Gentleman Todd Palin presented awards to first, second and third place Alaska winners April 23. Entries were judged by local acclaimed children's book authors and illustrators, Jean Rogers, Jim Fowler, Susi Fowler and Julianna Humphreys.

Airing weekdays at 1 p.m. on Alaska One, Reading Rainbow builds lasting friendships between children and books. The contest builds on the program's mission to stimulate a child's interest in reading.

Every child who enters the contest receives a special Certificate of Achievement signed by LeVar Burton, host of the Reading Rainbow series. Local first place winners will advance to the national competition.

Three national prizes are awarded at each grade level. This year prizes include a laptop computer (1st place), flat panel TV and DVD player (2nd place), and MP3 player (3rd place). National winners also receive three sets of READING RAINBOW DVDs and matching feature books - one for their school, one for their library, and one for themselves. In addition, national winning stories are featured on, one of the most-visited websites for children. To see previous national winners' stories as well as a sampling of national submissions, visit

Now in its 24th season, READING RAINBOW has garnered more than 250 awards, including 24 Emmys (nine for "Outstanding Children's Series"), a prestigious Peabody, nine CINE Golden Eagles, nine Parent's Choice Awards, and six international Prix Jeunesse Awards.

Reading Rainbow is a registered trademark of WNED-TV, Buffalo and is co-produced by WNED-TV, Buffalo and Educate Media Resources, Ltd., an affiliate of Educate, Inc. Educate, Inc. (NASDAQ: EEEE) is a leading pre-K-12 education services and products company serving families, teachers and schools through well-known, trusted brands including Sylvan Learning Centers, Hooked on Phonics, Catapult Learning and GPN. Major support for READING RAINBOW production and educational outreach has been provided by PBS and The Arthur Vining Davis Foundations.