Port Henry There were 16 competitors, but the big winner was Literacy Volunteers of Essex/Franklin Counties in its annual scrabble tournament.
The tourney was played March 2 at Moriah Central School in Port Henry. That same day another tourney was played in Saranac Lake.
“We really like holding this event and what better way to promote literacy than with a game that has been doing that for years,” Maria Burke, Literacy Volunteers of Essex/Franklin Counties director, said. “We wanted to have a Scrabble Day as opposed to two tournaments on different days, just hoping to hold an event in each county we serve and spread the awareness that we are here and we are here for the people in our communities.”
The Scrabble Day raised awareness and funds to support the adult literacy program.
Matt Bosley from Westport claimed first place, Kathy Seguin Benn of Westport came in second and Nick Manfred from Moriah placed third in the Port Henry tournament.
“Literacy Volunteers would like to recognize and thank the following restaurants for donating prizes: The King’s Inn in Port Henry, Boyea’s Grocery & Deli in Moriah Center and the Hot Biscuit Diner in Ticonderoga,” Burke said. “We would also like to thank all those who participated and volunteered at the event.”
More than 10 percent of North Country residents can’t read well enough to complete daily tasks.
A report by the National Assessment of Adult Literacy in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Education showed 12 percent of Essex County residents and 15 percent of Franklin County residents lack basic reading skills, Burke said.
Literacy Volunteers of Essex and Franklin Counties offers free, confidential tutoring on a one-to-one basis and in small groups to anyone older than age 16. Most of its students are people working toward high school graduate equivalency degrees (GED) or foreign workers who lack English skills, Burke said.