Read Across America Features Author Jerry Spinelli

Author Jerry Spinelli and a host of other special guests will help Elmwood Park Zoo celebrate their annual Read Across America event on Saturday, March 2, from 11 AM to 2 PM. Read Across America is an event organized by the National Education Association. It celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. Seuss by encouraging children and young adults to read.

The zoo’s celebration features Mr. Spinelli, a Norristown native and acclaimed author of “Maniac Magee” and “Stargirl.” He will be greeting guests and signing books in the zoo’s Canopy Gardens Hall.

Additional special guests will include members of RSVP, a King of Prussia-based organization that supports communities through volunteerism. They will be reading popular English and Spanish language children’s stories.

Popular PBS Kids character Super Why will be greeting guests, courtesy of his friends from the WHYY Kids Club.

In addition to the special guest appearances, Read Across America will also feature a book fair, live animal greets, and a used book drive that benefits RSVP. Read Across America is a free to attend event after purchasing regular zoo admission.

Jerry Spinelli’s Read Across America

Our annual celebration that focuses on the joys of reading returns on Saturday, March 2, from 10:30 am to 2:30 pm! Read Across America is a nationally-celebrated event that aims to motivate reading among children of all ages, and we have the privilege to celebrate our event with beloved author Jerry Spinelli! Mr. Spinelli is not only a Norristown native, but he has written about Elmwood Park Zoo in his classic Newberry Medal-winning novel Maniac Magee. Mr. Spinelli will be appearing as well as the local authors listed below. You can also purchase books from our book fair, and meet characters Beauty and Beast during a special story time presentation!



Jerry Spinelli – Author of Maniac Magee and Stargirl

Joan C. Yingling – Author of The Story of the Can’t that Could and The Story of the Curious Elf

Mercy Hansen Mize – Author of Samson’s Tail

Yolanda Stanton – Author of Mannon Makes Friends and Mannon Finds His Feelings

Theresa Cocci – Author of Harry’s Horrible Hair and Henry the Hungry Hound

Lauren Mosback – Author of Lets Grow on an Adventure and In Grandpaws’s Pawprints

Jeanne Helmar – Author of How to Ship a Giraffe and Do Blueberry Waffles Make Blueberry Bubbles?


Event Details:

The first 100 guests will be treated to a complimentary butterscotch krimpet, a nod to Maniac’s favorite snack in the book!

Author Greets: 10:30 am – 2:30 pm

Book Sale: 10:30 am – 2:30 pm

Animal Greet and Story Time with Educators: 10:30 am – 11 am

Story Time with Characters: Beauty and the Beast from 12 pm – 1 pm

Therapy Dogs: Check out Mercy Hansen Mize’s amazing story about Samson and his journey as a therapy dog and a chance to meet him as well



Read Across America is free to attend with zoo admission.
This event is free for yearly members.