Memphis Cook Convention Center Kicks Off Books4Bikes

November 15, 2011

The Memphis Cook Convention Center (MCCC) will kick off its 2011 Books4Bikes campaign to benefit the students at Florida-Kansas Elementary at the weekly luncheon of the Memphis Rotary Club on Tuesday, November 15, 2011 at 12 noon. Following a tradition that began more than six years ago, the Rotary Club will donate the first bike to the convention center's efforts. The MCCC's goal is to collect more than 75 new bikes that will be awarded to the students just before their Christmas holiday break.

The employees of the MCCC selected Florida-Kansas Elementary as its Adopt-a-School in 2010. Last year, Books4Bites donated more than 75 bicycles to Florida-Kansas Elementary encouraging students to read thousands of books. Over the last seven years, more than 550 new bikes have been given to Memphis City School students.

"We created Books4Bites several years ago as a way to help encourage the students to read," said Pierre Landaiche, Vice President and General Manager of the Memphis Cook Convention Center and Cannon Center for the Performing Arts. "To have the Rotary Club donate the first bike to our campaign every year means a great deal."

Florida-Elementary Principal Tracie Greer with her staff will monitor each student's efforts. The convention center will award bikes to students who read the most books, students who make the most improvement and students who receive the best test scores on their books. The MCCC is asking individuals and companies to donate a new bike or $100, so the convention center staff can purchase bikes suited to the winning student's size and gender.

"We hope to give away 12 bikes to each grade, and we'll have the award program at the school right before the holiday break," said Landaiche. "For many of the kids, it's an early Christmas."

The Memphis Cook Convention Center and the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts are managed by Memphis Management Group, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau.