Reading champs get to meet Yank champs at the stadium


By John Bayles

The New York Public Library sponsors an annual summer reading program to entice school students to continue reading regularly over the summer — most important, to continue thinking.

Last week, a number of the city’s top young readers were invited to a Yankees game, and they walked out on the pitcher’s mound surrounded by Bronx Bombers players.

One of the lucky readers was Christian Rosario, who spent his time at the Jefferson Market Library branch, at Sixth Ave. and W. 10th St., all summer with his eyes on the prize.

The prize as it turns out, was the chance to see up close and personal his favorite Yankee player, Curtis Granderson.

“It was fun meeting Curtis,” said Christian. “He asked me how many books I read.”

Rosario read a total of 60 books over the summer.

“I read Froggy books and ghost stories and the Toy Story books,” the 7-year-old told Granderson.

He plans once again to enter the contest next summer.

According to his grandmother, this summer was a real breakthrough for Christian. His grandmother is a former librarian and considers herself a “champion of reading.”

Granderson happens to be the “face of the program,” according to Public Library spokesperson Angela Montefinise. And she doesn’t believe it was mere coincidence that Granderson, who did not start Wednesday’s game against the Oakland A’s, was called in to pinch-hit and ended up going yard twice, ultimately leading the Yanks to victory.

“It was a big deal,” said Montefinise.