HOUSTON -- Astros catcher Jason Castro and his wife, Maris, will host the Castro’s Kids Book Drive to benefit the Houston Independent School District on Saturday, June 29 and Sunday, June 30.
Fans and supporters can donate new or gently used, age-appropriate books for children K-12 at the gates of Minute Maid Park before the Astros take on the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Those donating to the drive will be entered into a raffle to win Astros autographed memorabilia, courtesy of the Castros.
Jason and Maris are contributing additional books, and will deliver the donations to select public schools in the Houston Independent School District.
Those not attending the games the weekend of the drive can still drop off book donations in the Union Station lobby of Minute Maid Park starting Monday, June 24 through Friday, June 28 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Jason and Maris Castro kicked off their multifaceted initiative, Castro’s Kids, last month, which provides incentives and encourages students to embrace literacy. The Astros catcher and his wife both attended Stanford University.
“Maris and I couldn’t be more dedicated and excited to launch Castro’s Kids,” Jason said. “We attribute not only meeting each other, but many of the opportunities we have been given throughout our lives to education. By promoting literacy in the Houston school districts, we hope to make an impact in the area that we are proud to call our home.”
Nearly 20 years ago, HISD created the “Name That Book” contest to increase students’ interest in reading and introduce them to award-winning books in a variety of genres. Jason and Maris will be donating funds to the contest on behalf of Castro’s Kids, which will be matched by a donation from the Major League Baseball Players Association.
To encourage summer reading, Castro’s Kids has partnered with Better World Books, and will be giving 5,600 books to three schools in the district to support their summer reading platform.
Twenty five students from the school with the highest increase in summer reading participation will win an all-expenses paid trip to an Astros game as well as other Astros memorabilia.