Kindergartner Zoe Farr, of Atlantic City, hugs the Cat in the Hat during his visit to the Uptown Complex School on Wednesday afternoon.

Stefanie Campolo

Area schools are celebrating Read Across America this week with a variety of events that include visits from a cowboy and the famous “Cat in the Hat.”

Now in its 14th year, the event, officially celebrated March 2, celebrates what would be the 108th birthday of the late Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, author of the famous “Cat in the Hat” and other popular rhymed books.

Last week the well-traveled “Cat” was at the Stone Harbor School. On Wednesday, he visited Atlantic City schools, where he got some help from “Thing 1” and “Thing 2.” The visits are sponsored by the New Jersey Education Association, and the “cats” are played by retired educators. For the past three years, each school visited also gets a Dr. Seuss book. This year’s choice is “The Lorax.”

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Absecon will be holding its seventh annual Book Swap from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. today in the school cafetorium. Students, parents, and teachers are invited to bring in gently used books to trade for other books.

Several local schools also have events planned for Friday.

Children’s author Daryl Cobb will be visiting the Dawes Avenue School in Somers Point.

The Ocean Acres School in Stafford Township will hold a Battle of the Books at the Ocean Acres Community Center. After four weeks of Dr. Seuss trivia games in the library, the student from each second-grade class who scored the highest will participate in the game show-type contest.

Employees from Tropicana Casino and Resort will read to students at the Texas Avenue School in Atlantic City. Books will have a rodeo theme to celebrate the upcoming Atlantic City Boardwalk Rodeo at Boardwalk Hall. Cowboy Guy and his horse Black will tell the children all about his horse and the rodeo. Tropicana will donate books to the school library and children will get cowboy hats and bandanas.

In Vineland, the “Food For Thought” family night will bring preschool students and their families to the Casimer M. Dallago, Max Leuchter, or Almond Road preschools for food and fun. There will be foods based on favorite books, story book characters, a story time and displays of student art work.

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