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Third And Final Cup Of Tea For Senior, Students

Residents of Bishop’s Commons and Stacy Devendorf’s first grade class from Riley School enjoy their get together.

Residents of Bishop’s Commons and Stacy Devendorf’s first grade class from Riley School enjoy their get together.

OSWEGO, NY – Residents of Bishop’s Commons and Riley School first graders from Stacy Devendorf’s class shared their third and final cup of tea with each other as the group of seniors and children learned and experienced some lessons taught by Greg Mortenson in his NY Times best seller  “Three Cups of Tea.”

Three planned activities took place beginning with the reading of the children’s version of the bestseller, “Listen to the Wind,” a math lesson taught with sticks and stones and a final meeting forming the group as “family.”

Much like the characters in the book, children and residents shared tea as strangers, as friends, and finally as family.

“This experience of bringing some of the important lessons and ideas from the book has bridged the gap between ages,” explained senior living coordinator Julie Chetney. “All participants enjoyed the activities and the company of each other.”

VIP/Patron Tickets Available for Greg Mortenson Reception at American Foundry

Oswego, NY – Tickets are now available for a VIP/Patron Reception with Greg Mortenson at the American Foundry in Oswego from 4:30 – 6:30 pm on October 28th.  The reception will be just prior to Mortenson’s presentation at SUNY Oswego later that evening.

Tickets to the VIP event are $100 and can be purchased through the Oswego City School District Superintendent’s office between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. at 341-2001.

Tickets are limited and available on a first come, first served basis.

The reception includes appetizers, cash bar, a signed copy of Mortenson’s new book Stones Into Schools, and also VIP seating at Greg’s talk at the SUNY Oswego Campus Center that evening at 7:00 pm.

“Greg Mortenson is one of the country’s most in-demand speakers and we are very excited to welcome him to Oswego,” said Bill Reilly, owner of the river’s end bookstore and committee member of Oswego Reads, the group spearheading the community read.  “To have Greg be here and talk about his best-seller, Three Cups of Tea and share his amazing personal story is incredible for the community and for the school district.”

Mortenson believes that global education is the key to global peace, and he has been working on that concept for nearly two decades, one school at a time. In 1996, he co-founded the Central Asia Institute and serves as executive director. According to Mortenson, he has made 38 trips to oversee the building of schools in Afghanistan and Pakistan, totaling 76 months over the last 17 years.  He has helped establish more than 131 schools in rural and dangerous regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

In 2009, Mortenson received Pakistan’s highest civil award, Sitara-e-Pakistan (“Star of Pakistan”) for his humanitarian effort to promote girls education in rural areas for 15 years.
Mortenson’s New York Times bestseller, Three Cups of Tea, has sold 3.6 million copies worldwide. Three Cups of Tea is available for three age levels – adult, young adult and children. Locally, it is available at the river’s end bookstore in Oswego.
For additional information visit www.oswegoreads.com, www.gregmortenson.com, or www.threecupsoftea.com

Greg Mortenson to Speak at SUNY Oswego Oct. 28

Best-selling author Greg Mortenson (shown pictured) will speak at SUNY Oswego on October 28th. His first book, “Three Cups of TeOa,” is the selected book for Oswego’s first community-wide read initiated by Oswego Reads.

OSWEGO, NY – Best-selling author Greg Mortenson will speak at the Campus Center Arena at SUNY Oswego Oct. 28 and tickets to the much-anticipated event are available online only by going to the link on the Oswego Reads website at www.oswegoreads.com.

Mortenson will be making a special appearance to a few schools during the day before making a presentation in the evening at SUNY Oswego. His first book, “Three Cups of Tea,” is the selected book for Oswego’s first community-wide read initiated by Oswego Reads.  Tickets are $20.

The community-wide event is sponsored by Pathfinder Bank.

“We’re very excited to welcome Greg Mortenson to Oswego,” said Bill Reilly, owner of the river’s end bookstore and committee member of Oswego Reads, the group spearheading the community read. “The community and school district are extremely enthusiastic about the Oswego Reads program, and to have Greg visit here in October to talk about Three Cups of Tea and his amazing personal story, will be incredible.”

Numerous events are planned or have taken place leading up to the October 28th visit by Mortenson, and a kick-off for Oswego Reads took place recently in the Community Room at the Oswego Public Library.

In addition, a Pennies for Peace fundraising campaign is also underway throughout the community. Donation jugs have been placed at local business locations to raise money for the Pennies for Peace program. The program, which was founded by Mortenson in 1994, through his non-profit organization, Central Asia Institute, helps raise donations to build schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The Oswego City School District has also started the new school year by introducing “Three Cups of Tea” to its reading curriculum. 500 free student tickets are now available for students residing in or attending the Oswego City School District when an adult ticket is purchased. This offer is not available online.

To receive this offer, it is necessary to contact the Oswego City School District Superintendent’s office between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. at 341-2001 to acquire student tickets. There is a limit of two free tickets and proof of residency is required.

About the book

Three Cups of Tea has sold 3.6 million copies, been published in 41 countries and has been a New York Times bestseller for more than three years since its release. The book was named Time Magazine Asia Book of the Year and Mortenson’s newest book, “Stones into Schools,” released in December of 2009, debuted as #2 on the New York Times bestseller list.
Three Cups of Tea is available for three age levels – adult, young adult and children. Locally, it is available at the river’s end bookstore in Oswego.
To learn more, go to www.threecupsoftea.com.

About Mortenson

Mortenson, a nurse and mountain climber turned advocate for peace and education, has established more than 131 schools in rural and often volatile and dangerous regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan. These schools provide education to more than 58,000 children, including 48,000 girls where few education opportunities existed before.
Mortenson believes that global education is the key to global peace, and he has been working on that concept for nearly two decades, one school at a time. In 1996, he co-founded the Central Asia Institute and serves as executive director. According to Mortenson, he has made 38 trips to oversee the building of schools in Afghanistan and Pakistan, totaling 76 months over the last 17 years.
His work has not been without difficulty. In 1996, he survived an eight-day armed kidnapping by the Taliban in Pakistan and escaped a 2003 firefight with feuding Afghan warlords by hiding for eight hours under putrid animal hides in a truck going to a leather-tanning factory.
In 2009, Mortenson received Pakistan’s highest civil award, Sitara-e-Pakistan (“Star of Pakistan”) for his humanitarian effort to promote girls education in rural areas for 15 years.

Countdown To Author Mortenson’s Visit Under Way

OSWEGO, NY – The Oswego Reads Committee turned the page Tuesday evening.

Oswego superintendent of schools, Bill Crist, tells the large crowd about the importance of Oswego Reads to not only the school district but entire community as well.

Oswego superintendent of schools, Bill Crist, tells the large crowd about the importance of Oswego Reads to not only the school district but entire community as well.

“Oswego Reads” was formed to create a community wide experience that can be enjoyed by all segments and all ages of our community by embracing the same book, according to Laura Ryder, the director of literacy for the Oswego City School District.

The group held its official kickoff event at the Oswego Public Library in the Community Room to celebrate the book Three Cups of Tea and prepare for the author Greg Mortenson’s visit on Oct. 28 at SUNY Oswego’s Campus Center.

Oswego Reads is a collaboration among the school district, SUNY Oswego, the Oswego Public Library, Pathfinder Bank and others, according to Bill Reilly, owner of the river’s end bookstore and committee member of Oswego Reads.

“Greg Mortenson is one of the most in-demand speakers in the country,” Reilly said. “It is a real coup that we were able to enlist Greg to come to Oswego. So many organizations in town have been part of this whole process.”

Mortenson’s Oct. 28 visit to Oswego will be “the single largest literary event in the history of Oswego,” Reilly said. “That’s pretty incredible.”

Rameen Mohammadi, SUNY Oswego’s Associate Provost for Undergraduate and Special Programs, spoke on behalf of the university.

Part of the large crowd applauds Oswego Reads' progress in bringing author Greg Mortenson to the Port City on Oct. 28

Part of the large crowd applauds Oswego Reads' progress in bringing author Greg Mortenson to the Port City on Oct. 28

“Everyone can make a difference,” Assemblyman Will Barclay added. “This is my first introduction with Oswego Reads. I am impressed about how you guys have all come together.”

Central New York has a rich literary history and is the birthplace of Literacy Volunteers, he pointed out.

First Ward Councilor Connie Cosemento represented the mayor.

“I am so excited to me a very special person like Greg Mortenson,” she said. “At the end of the book, one of the girls that was educated in his schools said, ‘Education is as important as water, we need it to live.’”

Pathfinder’s senior vice president Ron Tascarella recalled working with a woman who had lost her sight.

The one thing she missed most of all was being able to sit down with a good book and read, he said she had told him.

“I am really thankful to be in a community that has volunteered and worked so hard to bring this event together – an event that is gong to be exciting for our youth and for adults,” he said.

Bill Crist, school superintendent, agreed, adding that there is no better book for the Oswego Reads project than Three Cups of Tea.

It conveys an impressive message of helping others who are less fortunate, he said.

OHS singers, junior Danielle Faivus, left, and senior Jessica Krauss, performed the Three Cups of Tea song for the large audience.

OHS singers, junior Danielle Faivus, left, and senior Jessica Krauss, perform the Three Cups of Tea song for the large audience.

“The activities that we have planned for the day that Greg arrives in our schools, will leave a mark on Oswego, and the citizens and children of Oswego who value education, who value literacy and to value and cultivate an interest of humanitarian assistance,” Crist said.

Mortenson’s book was selected because of its message, according to Reilly.

“It’s talking about a world that’s succeeding through education as opposed to war,” he explained. “The message is let’s achieve peace.”

The book has been on the best seller list for years, he added.

Since it has been on the list, the publisher has created a picture book version and a middle reader edition as well.

“Three Cups of Tea – Young Readers Edition” is aimed at grades 6-8.

“Listen To The Wind (The Story of Dr. Greg & Three Cups of Tea) is suitable for students in grades 1-3.

Two OHS singers, junior Danielle Faivus and senior Jessica Krauss, performed the Three Cups of Tea song for the large audience.

Oswego Reads’ aim is to not only bring the Oswego community together, but also raise awareness and encourage a world view that advocates understanding and tolerance.

The group’s website www.oswegoreads.com contains curriculum information for teachers, details on the events and more.

According to the website: Greg Mortenson is the co-author of the #1 NY Times Best Seller Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace, One School At A Time.

It recounts the journey that led Mortenson from a failed 1993 attempt to climb Pakistan’s K2, the world’s second highest mountain, to successfully establish schools in some of the most remote regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

By replacing guns with pencils, rhetoric with reading, Mortenson combines his unique background with his intimate knowledge of the developing world to promote peace with books, not bombs, and successfully bring education and hope to remote communities in central Asia. Three Cups of Tea is at once an unforgettable adventure and the inspiring true story of how one man really is changing the world – one school at a time.

Greg Mortenson Tickets To Go On Sale July 12th

Best-selling author Greg Mortenson (shown pictured) is coming to Oswego October 28th and tickets to the much-anticipated event will be going on sale Monday, July 12th. His first book, “Three Cups of Tea,” is the selected book for Oswego’s first community-wide read initiated by Oswego Reads.

OSWEGO, New York – Best-selling author Greg Mortenson is coming to Oswego October 28th and tickets to the much-anticipated event will be going on sale Monday, July 12th. Mortenson will be making a special appearance to a few schools during the day before making a presentation in the evening at the SUNY Oswego Campus Center. His first book, “Three Cups of Tea,” is the selected book for Oswego’s first community-wide read initiated by Oswego Reads.  Tickets may be purchased online only by going to the link on the Oswego Reads Web site at www.oswegoreads.com.

“Greg Mortenson is one of the most in-demand speakers in the country,” said Bill Reilly, owner of the river’s end bookstore and committee member of Oswego Reads, the group spearheading the community read. “It is a real coup that we were able to enlist Greg to come to Oswego and I anticipate tickets to go quickly.”

Also on July 12th, approximately 500 free student tickets will be available for students residing in or attending the Oswego City School District when an adult ticket is purchased. This offer is not available online.

To receive this offer, it is necessary to contact the Oswego City School District Superintendent’s office between 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. on or after Monday, July 12, at 341-2001 to acquire student tickets. There is a limit of two free tickets and proof of residency is required.

Each week, a table with information about the community read and the Pennies for Peace project as well as the selected book, “Three Cups of Tea,” will be at the Oswego Farmers’ Market, in front of the river’s end bookstore. Visitors to the Oswego Reads table will be able to take a chance to win a pair of tickets to hear Mortenson speak at the SUNY Oswego Campus Center. Three winners of a pair of tickets will be drawn at the kick-off event, August 31st, in the Community Room at the Oswego Public Library.

About the book

Three Cups of Tea has sold 3.6 million copies, been published in 41 countries and has been a New York Times bestseller for more than three years since its release. The book was named Time Magazine Asia Book of the Year and Mortenson’s newest book, “Stones into Schools,” released in December of 2009, debuted as #2 on the New York Times bestseller list.
Three Cups of Tea is available for three age levels – adult, young adult and children. Locally, it is available at the river’s end bookstore in Oswego.
To learn more, go to www.threecupsoftea.com.

About Mortenson

Mortenson, a nurse and mountain climber turned advocate for peace and education, has established more than 131 schools in rural and often volatile and dangerous regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan. These schools provide education to more than 58,000 children, including 48,000 girls where few education opportunities existed before.
Mortenson believes that global education is the key to global peace, and he has been working on that concept for nearly two decades, one school at a time. In 1996, he co-founded the Central Asia Institute and serves as executive director. According to Mortenson, he has made 38 trips to oversee the building of schools in Afghanistan and Pakistan, totaling 76 months over the last 17 years.
His work has not been without difficulty. In 1996, he survived an eight-day armed kidnapping by the Taliban in Pakistan and escaped a 2003 firefight with feuding Afghan warlords by hiding for eight hours under putrid animal hides in a truck going to a leather-tanning factory.
In 2009, Mortenson received Pakistan’s highest civil award, Sitara-e-Pakistan (“Star of Pakistan”) for his humanitarian effort to promote girls education in rural areas for 15 years.
The community-wide event is sponsored by Pathfinder Bank.

Enjoy “Three Cups of Tea” at Oswego Farmers’ Market

Nancy Prarie, right, and Wynette Dhose, members of a local book club in Minetto, host the Oswego Reads “Three Cups of Tea” table during Thursday’s (June 17) Oswego Farmers’ Market. Each week, members from area book clubs will be available at the table at Farmers’ Market to answers questions about the first community read and the selected book, “Three Cups of Tea.”

OSWEGO, New York – Local book clubs have joined forces with the newly formed Oswego Reads to help spread the word about the first community-wide reading initiative. Each week, a table with information about the community read and the Pennies for Peace project as well as the selected book, “Three Cups of Tea,” will be at the Oswego Farmers’ Market, in front of the river’s end bookstore. Book club members will be on hand to help with questions about the book, which is available for three age levels – adult, young adult and children – as well as the Pennies for Peace project.

Pennies for Peace is a program through Central Asia Institute (CAI), which was founded by Greg Mortenson. Mortenson, co-founder and executive director of CAI and co-author of Three Cups of Tea, will make an appearance in Oswego, October 28th.
Tickets to see Mortenson are slated to go on sale in mid-July and will be available through a link at www.oswegoreads.com.

When the tickets go on sale, visitors to the the Oswego Reads table will be able to take a chance to win a pair of tickets to hear Mortenson speak at the SUNY Oswego Campus Center. Three winners of a pair of tickets will be drawn at the kick-off event, August 31st, in the Community Room at the Oswego Public Library.

The community-wide event is sponsored by Pathfinder Bank and initiated by Oswego Reads, which was created with the goal to create a community-wide experience that can be enjoyed by all segments and all ages of the community by embracing the same book. As part of this initiative, community events and activities will be held to promote literacy, discovery, sharing and dialogue of the issues and themes presented in these books.
For more information, go to www.oswegoreads.com.

Oswego Reads Project To Showcase Author Greg Mortenson’s “Three Cups of Tea”

Members of the Oswego community gathered recently for the launch of the first-ever Community Read project showcasing Greg Mortenson’s book “Three Cups of Tea.” The “Oswego Reads” initiative includes residents of all ages reading one of the three versions of Mortenson’s book, a variety of events related to the book throughout the year, and the culmination of Mortenson visiting Oswego to speak on October 28th about his book, and the Pennies for Peace campaign that helps build schools in Pakistan. Shown pictured from left to right in the back row are: Pathfinder Bank Senior Vice President/Chief Financial Officer James Dowd; Oswego City School District Superintendent Bill Crist; OCSD Sixth grade student Calista Lloyd; SUNY Oswego President Deborah Stanley; SUNY Oswego Student Association President Christina Ballesteros; Oswego City School District Director of Literacy Laura Ryder; and the river’s end bookstore owner Bill Reilly. Front row left to right are: OCSD Kindergarten student Neil Roman; OCSD Second grade student Julia Roman; and OCSD First grade student Spencer Stepien.

OSWEGO, New York – Oswego has launched a new program that the entire city can participate in — the Port City’s first-ever Community Read project with Greg Mortenson’s book “Three Cups of Tea.”

This project includes residents all of ages reading one of the three versions of Mortenson’s book, a plethora of events related to the book throughout the year and the culmination of Mortenson visiting Oswego to speak on October 28th about his book and the Pennies for Peace campaign that helps build schools in Pakistan.

The project has been in the works for a while now after Superintendent of Oswego Schools Bill Crist stumbled upon the project two years ago. During the summer, he was on his way to a conference when he drove past a library sporting a Community Read sign.

“I came back and immediately told the river’s end bookstore owner Bill Reilly about it,” Crist said. “I just thought Community Read would be a fantastic program for our school district, for our city.” After speaking with Reilly, Crist found out there was a similar project on a smaller scale already taking place between the river’s end and the high school.

After recruiting Reilly, the superintendent got his Director of Literacy, Laura Ryder, on board with the project. “We started a committee now comprised of 25-plus people from the Oswego City School District, SUNY Oswego and the community,” Ryder said. It was Ryder who chose the book for the project after she attended a conference.

“I heard Greg Mortenson speak and I thought this was the perfect book for children, teens and adults,” she said. “It is wonderful to be part of something in the community.”

Crist agreed. “To have everybody in the city, the school district and the college reading a book with a like theme and coming away with a similar message is wonderful,” he said. “The whole concept of doing good for others, while understanding the value of education and literacy.”

The superintendent explained that the book was written after Mortenson had traveled to Pakistan to climb the world’s second highest peak, K2. The author was injured while climbing the mountain and stayed for a while in a mountain community while he recuperated. During that time, he discovered that there was not a school in that community; in fact, there were not a lot of schools in Pakistan. This is what drove him to write his three books, the adult, teen and children’s version, and why he founded the Pennies for Peace campaign, which helps build schools in the Central Asian countries of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Ryder noted that two SUNY Oswego graduate students have created a Web site for the Community Read project, www.oswegoreads.com, and it will serve as a resource for information specific to the project and community events.

“The events as they unfold will be posted on the website,” Ryder said. “We will be blogging to let everyone know what is going on.”

A wide variety of events are planned to coincide with the reading of the book. Crist said events are being planned at multiple venues at a variety of dates and times that will be announced shortly.
Some of the events include mountain climbing experts giving presentations to communicate their stories and supplementing it with slides; tea tastings; children’s plays performed by the Oswego Children’s Theater about the subject; lectures from a SUNY Oswego professor, who is from Pakistan, about the culture of the country; and as previously mentioned, Mortenson speaking to the greater Oswego community.

“Everyone should stay tuned,” Ryder advised. “There will be a lot of exciting things happening with regard to Oswego Reads, and it will culminate with a great event at the Campus Center at SUNY Oswego with Greg Mortenson on October 28th.”

Crist offered special thanks to Pathfinder Bank and president, Thomas Schneider, for supporting the concept by providing necessary capital for an Oswego visit by the author, Greg Mortenson.
“Pathfinder Bank continues to be an important part of the fiber of this community,” he said. “When we went to Tom, he was immediately receptive to the idea of a community read and the impact of having the author visit Oswego. We are extremely pleased and thankful for this important financial commitment to this community-wide effort.”

In fact, most of the organizations in the community are on board with this project. Some of them include Oswego Health, local small businesses, the Greater Oswego-Fulton Chamber of Commerce, the YMCA, the Oswego Public Library, The Palladium-Times, and each of the educational institutions in the city.

“The enthusiasm throughout the community is greater than I have ever seen for something like this,” Reilly said. “Almost every organization in our community has stepped up and said they want to be a part of this.”

“This community effort has been very impressive and rewarding,” Crist agreed. “It’s something that has been really exciting for us as plans begin to take off — it has really blossomed into something positive.”

Reilly also noted that 20 percent of every copy of Three Cups of Tea sold at the river’s end bookstore would be donated to the Pennies for Peace campaign.

Article re-released courtesy of Erin Place, The Palladium Times

Group Seeks To Bring Best-Selling Author To Oswego

OSWEGO, NY – The Oswego City School District invites everyone to have a cup of tea.

“Three Cups of Tea” actually; the book written by Greg Mortenson.

"Oswego Reads" “Oswego Reads” was formed with the goal to create a community wide experience that can be enjoyed by all segments and all ages of our community by embracing the same book, according to Laura Ryder, the district’s director of literacy.

This tome was selected because of its message, according to Bill Riley, of the rivers’ end bookstore, who is participating in the program.

“It’s talking about a world that’s succeeding through education as opposed to war,” he said. “The message is let’s achieve peace.”

The book has been on the best seller list for three years, and still is, he added.

Since it has been on the list, the publisher has created a picture book version and a middle reader edition as well.

“In so doing it lends itself beautifully to being incorporated into all levels within the school district and community,” he said.

“Three Cups of Tea – Young Readers Edition” is aimed at grades 6-8.

“Listen To The Wind (The Story of Dr. Greg & Three Cups of Tea) is suitable for students in grades 1-3.

The program is a cooperative effort among the district, SUNY Oswego, the Oswego Public Library, Oswego Health, Pathfinder Bank, the chamber and others.

To provide more information, they have created an Oswego Reads website, Ryder said.

“We have been meeting in committee since this summer,” she said. “This is a huge initiative. The actual community read will kick off in the fall of 2010, September. It will be a two-month community read with various events throughout those two months.”

The group’s logo depicts the lighthouse casting its beacon above some books.

“It’s our hope that this first-ever community read for Oswego will be the first and that we will continue to do this for the community,” Ryder said.

Community events and activities will be held to promote literacy, discovery, sharing and dialogue of the issues and themes presented in these books, she explained.

The group’s aim is to not only bring the Oswego community together, but also raise awareness and encourage a world view that advocates understanding and tolerance.

The group’s website www.oswegoreads.com also contains curriculum information for teachers, details on the events and more.

“Right now (the site) is in its infancy. There is not much on the pages because we really just got this created right before Christmas,” Ryder explained.

The events committee and publicity committee are working to enhance the website, she added.

“Then, when you come to the site, there will be more and more information,” she said.

It is the group’s hope that the culminating event will be the appearance of the author in Oswego, Riley said.

It would take place at the college’s Campus Center, he added.

“We are currently waiting to hear back from his publisher as far as a confirmation of an exact date,” he said. “We hope to have that tied up by the end of the month.”

According to the website: Greg Mortenson is the co-author of the #1 NY Times Best Seller Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace, One School At A Time.

It recounts the journey that led Mortenson from a failed 1993 attempt to climb Pakistan’s K2, the world’s second highest mountain, to successfully establish schools in some of the most remote regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

By replacing guns with pencils, rhetoric with reading, Mortenson combines his unique background with his intimate knowledge of the developing world to promote peace with books, not bombs, and successfully bring education and hope to remote communities in central Asia. Three Cups of Tea is at once an unforgettable adventure and the inspiring true story of how one man really is changing the world—one school at a time.

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