Harrison wins Iron Bowl tickets, AEA reading contest

Published 3:44 pm Wednesday, November 15, 2023

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By Carey Reeder | Managing Editor

Caleb Harrison was named one of two grand prize winners of the 2023 Be A Champion and Read reading contest held by the Alabama Education Association on Nov. 15. A surprise assembly was held at Clanton Intermediate School to announce Harrison as the winner, and award him the grand prize — tickets to the 2023 Iron Bowl for him and two guests.

“It feels pretty good, and I am so excited,” Harrison said.

This year was the 10th year for the only statewide reading contest in Alabama, and Harrison was chosen at random from 35,000 students across the state who qualified for it. Each year, students in grades kindergarten through fifth grade are challenged to read six reading-level appropriate books to qualify for the grand prize. Harrison said he read a few of the books from the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series to help him qualify.

Harrison was not aware he won the contest when the assembly was called, and Alabama mascot Big Al came out in front of the CIS student body and staff to help set the mood for the announcement. Harrison said he has never attended the Iron Bowl before, but has been to an Alabama football game before. However, this will be his first time inside Jordan-Hare Stadium on Nov. 25. Prior to the game, Harrison and his two guests will get the chance to tailgate, get on the field, meet cheerleaders and some of the mascots.

One Alabama fan and one Auburn fan were chosen as the grand prize winners. Alysa Hatchett, a fifth grader at Beulah Elementary School in Lee County, was named the Auburn fan winner.

Students and teachers at CIS were given the chance to take photos with Big Al after the assembly concluded.