WrestleMania Reading Challenge World Finals 2012

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March 30, 2012

MIAMI – WWE Superstars spend the night before WrestleMania honoring the stories and legends of those that have come before them at the annual WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony. It’s the perfect way to celebrate WWE and it’s rich history. But it’s also a great way for the Superstars and Divas to clear their minds before focusing on the impending battle that is less than 24 hours away. The same mindset holds true for the 20 finalists of the Seventh Annual WrestleMania Reading Challenge World Finals.

For these bookworms, from grades 5 through 12, their main event takes place on Saturday morning at the Dade County Public Library. While a WWE Championship isn’t on the line for these bibliophiles, a chance to win ringsides seats at Sun Life Stadium is. But before they face off in academic competition and devour the written word, the stellar students will have a chance to unwind and meet WWE Superstar Mick Foley and WWE Diva Kelly Kelly for their own exclusive autograph signing. "The kids had no idea we were coming," Kelly Kelly says. "It was such an honor that they were excited to meet us. They were so psyched to sit and talk with and ask us questions. I was so happy that we were able to reward them in that type of way. It’s a special thank you for a good job and for all the hard work they’ve been doing during the school year."

"I always welcome being part of something positive in WWE," Mick Foley says. "I love the fact that WWE promotes reading with an event like this where I get a chance to talk to the kids about their favorites authors and the letters they wrote to their favorite Superstars. The misconception is that wrestling and academics don’t go hand in hand. But I think most Superstars who spend time on the road end up getting an education that’s second to none and we’re able to share that with members of the WWE Universe But it is nice to defy conventional logical and do something positive."

This special autograph signing was all about the kids and rewarding their dedication to reading. "I was going to my public library and I saw a poster with John Cena and the Rock on it. I love to read and I love WrestleMania so the Reading Challenge was a perfect match for me," Nicole Jones, a 7th grader from Alabama says. "I’ve learned determination because I’ve read my book five times and I want to be able to answer every questions so I can win front row seats!" It’s that kind of determination that will make the competition a fierce yet friendly one. "I’m psyched about meeting Kelly Kelly and Mick Foley! He’s got a lot of names and a sock puppet," Isaac Rodriguez, a 6th grader from California says. "But I’m nervous about tomorrow. I don’t even know if I’ll be able to hit the buzzer."

As to what advice this Superstar and Diva had for the kids who are competing tomorrow? Foley says, "I would give the kids the same advice I would give to any WWE Superstar who’s competing at WrestleMania for the first time: enjoy it and take advantage of every second of the experience."  As for Kelly Kelly, "I’d say stay positive and don’t get too overwhelmed and be yourself. Don’t be too nervous about it. Just go into it with an open mind."

The WrestleMania Reading Challenge encourages tweens and teens to read not only during Teen Read Week but each and every day beyond. Who knew that reading a book could lead to a trip to The Shows of Shows on The Grandest Stage of Them All? Now that’s a story with a happy ending.

For more information, visit wrestlemaniareadingchallenge.com.

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