Countdown to the Kickoff: March 18

Don’t miss the Big Read Kickoff on Sunday, March 18, 3-5 p.m. at the Michael A. Guido Theater in the Ford Community and Performing Arts Center, 15801 Michigan Ave., Dearborn. The event is free and open to all and will feature:

  • Remarks from Mayor John B. O’Reilly, Jr. and Dearborn Library Commission Chair Marcel Pultorak.
  • Dance and music performances by Ardan Academy of Irish Dance, B.F. Raices Mexicanas de Detroit, Maples Music Ensemble, Nadanta (Indian Classical and Bollywood Fusion), and P.R.C.U.A. Tatry Dancers.
  • FREE paperback copies of The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri (including a limited number of copies in Arabic).
  • Premiere showing of a community-produced film on immigration and name stories with contributions from State Representative Abdullah Hammoud, Dearborn City Council President Susan Dabaja and Councilman David Bazzy, Dearborn business owner Karen Nigosian, Dearborn Board of Education President Mary Lane, and many others.
  • Other fun activities, such as a large world map display on which you can put a sticker indicating where your family is from, and drawing slips to enter to win a great prize. Drawing slips will be available at other select events throughout the Big Read. The winner will be announced at the Wrap Up on April 28.

The Big Read Dearborn, presented by Dearborn Public Library in partnership with several local community organizations, is celebrating Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Namesake and is themed “What’s in a name?” featuring over 40 fun and educational events in March and April for all ages. Visit or for details.

DFCU Financial, the East & West Dearborn Downtown Development Authorities, Dearborn Public Library Foundation, and the Friends of the Library-Dearborn (FOLD) are all Silver sponsors at the $1,000 level. The University of Michigan-Dearborn Mardigian Library, Henry Ford College Eshleman Library, AAUW-Dearborn, and the Dearborn Community Fund are all Bronze sponsors at the up to $500 level. Thank you to the NEA and all the partners and sponsors who are helping to make this program possible.

NEA Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest.