July 5, 2020
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Library urges community to join Winter Reading Challenge

January 3, 2020

Can Sonoma County read a million minutes in a month? Booklovers of all ages in Sonoma County are invited to join the library in the nationwide 2020 Winter Reading Challenge. 

The library has set a goal for Sonoma County to read a million minutes in January and is asking each participant to read at least 600 minutes (20 minutes a day) during that time. All reading logged between Wednesday, January 1, and Thursday, January 31, will count toward the challenge.

“Our primary focus with the Winter Reading Challenge is to foster a culture of reading in our community,” said Kathy DeWeese, Youth Services Administrator at the Sonoma County Library. “We encourage participants of all ages to read for 20 minutes every day. Let’s show the country how much Sonoma County loves to read!” 

Participants can track their reading and participation in the program online at and through the Beanstack app. Paper logs will also be available at each branch. 

Studies show that reading 20 minutes a day builds vocabulary and empathy and prepares children for learning. Children who read for just 20 minutes a day see 1.8 million words each year and have scores on standardized tests in the 90th percentile. Compare this with children who read for just one minute per day; they only see 8,000 words a year and have scores in the 10th percentile on standardized tests.

If Sonoma County readers are among the communities who read the most during the challenge, the library has a chance to win books and author visits. Sign up for the Winter Reading Program at your local library branch or by visiting The Winter Reading Program is free and open to all ages. This program is a partnership between Penguin Random House and Beanstack. The hashtag for the program is #winterread2020.