Baysox poster winner recognized
STEVENSVILLE — Representatives of the Bowie Baysox baseball team were at Bayside Elementary School on Thursday, Feb. 2, and hosted an assembly to honor fourth-grader Taylor Himes, the local winner of the team’s reading program poster contest.
Students around the state submitted poster designs as part of the Baysox Read and Hit a Home Run Reading Program. For the winning the contest, Taylor will have her poster reproduced and placed in every participating school in the county.
During the assembly, Taylor was announced the winner in front of her classmates and teachers, who cheered her on. A Baysox representative and the team’s giant furry mascot, named Louie, presented Taylor with a framed copy of her poster and invited her to throw out a ceremonial first pitch during the Queen Anne’s County Reading Night on Saturday, May 20.
Also on hand at the assembly was Victoria Samuels from the Educational Systems Federal Credit Union, which sponsors the reading program. Samuels presented Taylor, who lives in Centreville, with a $50 Visa gift card and a large certificate with her name on it.
The poster contest kicks off the Read and Hit a Home Run Reading Program where the students get a free ticket to a Baysox game if they read four books. This is the 21st year the minor league baseball team has hosted the reading program and, during that time, kids from Queen Anne’s County and across the state have read millions of books as they worked toward earning free Baysox tickets.
After the assembly, Taylor said, “I liked drawing it. It’s really fun. I like to read a lot and I love baseball.”
Her mother reads to her ,and sometimes Taylor reads to her mother.
Karen Hipps, a teacher at Bayside, complimented Himes for winning. “I think it’s amazing. She’s a great artist and loves to draw.”
During the assembly, Matt Wilson, Baysox communications manager, read a poem out loud to very attentive students and he announced Taylor as the winner. The students designed their posters to show how much they like to read, “but one in particular took a lot of skill to be made. It was a student from Bayside Elementary that’s in the 4th grade.”
Wilson read, “Time to stand up, applaud, and maybe even buy her a dinner
Because that’s right guys, her name is Taylor, and she’s our winner!”
There were more than a 100 poster entries from several different schools in Queen Anne’s County and more than 1,000 total entries from eight counties, Wilson said.
The Baysox marketing staff determined the winner. “We were looking for a poster [that] included a drawing of a book and included the phrase ‘Read & Hit a Home Run.’ We selected Taylor’s poster from all the others because we liked her representation of Louie and it was a very clean drawing of a family excited to read and ready to play baseball,” Wilson said.
The reading program where students read four books for a free Baysox ticket runs from October to May. Public schools, private schools and home schools are invited and encouraged to participate.
Besides schools in Queen Anne’s County, the following counties participated in the reading program: Prince George’s, Montgomery, Anne Arundel, Howard, Charles, Calvert, and St. Mary’s. Schools. Schools in Washington, D.C., can also participate.
For more information and to register a school, contact Matt Wilson at 301464-4851, or visit the organization’s website Baysox.com. The Bowie Baysox team is an AA affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles.
Taylor Himes, fourth-grader at Bayside Elementary School, is the poster winner for Queen Anne’s County as part of Baysox’s Read and Hit a Home Run Reading Program. Here Baysox mascot Louie congratulates Taylor during an assembly at the school on Thursday, Feb. 2.