Photos: Students gather downtown for 21st annual Wyoming Reads event

Students sit inside the Nicolaysen Art Museum for a presentation and play before heading over to the Natrona County Public Library during the 21st annual Wyoming Reads event. (Dan Cepeda, Oil City)

Each armed with sunglasses and a new book, 1,050 first-graders gathered downtown for the 21st annual Wyoming Reads literacy event on Tuesday.

The students came from elementary schools and home schools county-wide for the event, which gives children incentives to read and explore books.

Every student was given one book from a list, and 250 of them received their first library card.

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The program was started 21 years ago by John Jorgensen in honor of his late wife, Sue, and has since grown to include every first-grader in Wyoming and to some neighboring states.