Your city hall, community hall or provincial/territorial legislature are also great places to set up a reading tent. Recruit some volunteers to read aloud from local histories and biographies. Help people to learn about the lives of local heroes who have statues and memorials around town.
We know a lot about stories today. We hear and learn them from TV, movies and videos. From Vancouver to Quebec City and Fredericton, from Shsashet and Yellowknife, we tune into the electronic culture and absorb its stories for hours, every day.
But do we know our own stories? Our family, community or national story? These stories all exist and they are wonderfully rich. But most of them lie on shelves, silent and unread, unknown to us as we rush through our busy lives. If we take these stories down from the shelf, turn off the TV for a few minutes and read about ourselves -- our history and heroes, our failures and achievements -- we will come to understand each other better.
Let us come together in our communities and share these stories with our children. If we do, persistently and daily (the way we do with TV), we will be encouraging a love for reading, and developing respect for one another.
Seek out a group in your community you don't know, and invite them to your reading circle to share their stories with the children. In return, give them one of your stories for their children. Invite them to join the reading circle and to participate at your Canada Day reading tent.