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Books for Treats Day

Books for Treats Day is a time to give out gently used or new books on Halloween. Rebecca Morgan started giving out books to trick-or-treaters in 1995, at her home in the Willow Glen neighborhood of San Jose, California, because she didn't like that candy was the main Halloween treat. She chose to hand out books because she wanted to give something that would make a difference and that children would still appreciate. In advance of the first Books for Treats Day, Morgan bought books at a library book sale and sorted them by grade level from toddler to sixth grade.

In 2001, Morgan started the Books for Treats organization, which helped spread Books for Treats Day around the United States and Canada. Books for Treats says of books: "Books feed children's minds, while candy only feeds their cavities. Books encourage children to read, and parents to read with them and/or ask them about their books. Many children rarely receive books as gifts, so even gently read books are special treats." Books for Treats says of the day: "Books For Treats takes a little more time than buying a giant bag of candy, but if you believe that you can help turn Halloween from a cavity-, obesity-, diabetes-contributing holiday into one that shows that society cares about our children, then it's worth the extra effort." With something so sweet, who needs candy?!

How to Observe Books for Treats Day

Forgo the usual Halloween candy and give out gently used or new books! Encourage your friends to hand out books too! Ensure the books are age-appropriate, perhaps by sorting them in different boxes before handing them out. Find books for the day at library book sales and garage sales. Discounted books can be purchased through a partnership between Books for Treats and Scholastic. Fill out an application and put "Books for Treats" where it asks how you heard of the program. Books for Treats also has a partnership with Books4School, through which discounted books can be purchased even if you are not part of a school. Find information on the Books for Treats website for communities and residents. You could also donate to Books for Treats and follow their Facebook page.

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