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Rotary members distribute dictionaries to Ceres third-graders
Sinclear dictionary recipient
A Sinclear Elementary School student checked out his dictionary during an assembly on Jan. 12. - photo by Jeff Benziger

In this day and age of spellcheck and researching via google and Siri, the Ceres Rotary Club recently resumed its program to distribute dictionaries to all third-graders attending Ceres schools.

Members of the service club have been unable to distribute dictionaries since 2020 when the pandemic closed or limited school attendance.

Ceres Rotary Club President Liz Hosmer said the club has been giving out dictionaries for 17 years. This year approximately 1,100 Macmillan dictionaries – chocked full of color photos – were handed out.

Hosmer said the books cost $35 apiece but noted “they’re worth it.”

For some students, the dictionary is the first book they’ve ever owned.

“Just to see them excited about books and being able to get interested in reading is just a wonderful thing to see,” said Hosmer.

In keeping with the theme, Rotarian Sharon Carter read the short story book, “The Word Collector,” to third-graders assembled at the various schools.

The club visited Adkison and Don Pedro elementary schools on Wednesday, Jan. 11; Sinclear, Carroll Fowler and Virginia Parks on Thursday. The club headed to Sam Vaughn, Hidahl and Whitmore Charter on Jan. 18 and visited Lucas, Caswell and Westport on Thursday. They will be distributing dictionaries today at La Rosa, Walter White and Patricia Kay Beaver schools. 

The Ceres Rotary Club was chartered in 1977 with Charter President Gus Pallios taking the gavel.

Dave Hosmer, Newby Herrick and Liz Hosmer
Ceres Rotary Club members Dave Hosmer, Newby Herrick and Liz Hosmer prepare to handout hard-covered dictionaries with pictures at Sinclear Elementary School. - photo by Jeff Benziger