Thank You to All Who Attended Trivia Night!

Our 2nd Trivia Night was a blast.  Don’t miss out on the fun next year!

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You Are Invited!

A to Z would love to have you and your friends join us for our annual FUNdraiser on Saturday, February 21st at 7:00 pm. Trivia Night will consist of three rounds of trivia with live auctions in between. Tables seat between six and eight people, so get a group together, or feel free to come in pairs and join a friendly table of A to Z supporters.

Last year folks had a blast – the perfect way to cure your cabin fever.
Head to the website to buy your tickets and let us know who will be joining you.

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The Magic of Trivia Night

By Pat Kelly

There was some kind of magic across the room as two individuals hoped to be the winner chosen out of the raffle jar. They fancied different prizes and for different reasons, didn’t know each other. One anticipated taking her grandson to The Field Museum; after all he was eleven now and a ripe age for such an outing. The second wanted the bag from Zambia for herself, her plan was to travel there to acquire another one in the summer from the marketplace. “They are just so beautiful,” she thought.

By yet another synchronicity in this world, the two became the new owners of their respective prizes that Saturday at the A to Z Trivia Night fundraiser.

If you attended you know there were tickets for Chicago team games to bid on, 26 raffle prizes given away, a Name That Tune competition and a grand prize for the Trivia champions. There was laughter and camaraderie and a competitive spirit. And there were at least two women who went home with the prize of their dreams, having fulfilled a child’s dream somewhere in Zambia.

P.S. If you are curious as to what the evening looked like, here’s the program… we had a great time. Please join us next year!

Trivia Night Program

Spread the Word

Written and Photographed by Scott Dalzell

NOTE: Scott publishes great writing and photography at his blog, Rantings of a Loon. That’s where this article originally appeared. Please check it out!


Concentration was high during trivia rounds.

After yesterday’s busy day, I’ve been completely out of it today. I actually took a three-hour nap. On a hard floor. That never happens.


Mal welcomes attendees to the event.

But one of the highlights of yesterday was for a friend’s not-for-profit, A to Z Literacy Movement, fundraiser. The event was held to help raise money for books, shipping and other costs needed to help run the much-needed organization. The organization provides books to kids who would normally not be able to afford reading material and serves kids in Zambia and Chicagoland. The group also sends a handful of teachers to Zambia once a year to work with many of these children and their teachers.


Positive energy was everywhere on Saturday night.

Many of us take so many things for granted. I find it somewhat ironic that we have students and parents that take education for granted. At times reading, writing, and all the core subjects seem like a huge imposition to children and their families. Education is often times put behind sports and extra-curricular activities.


Pictures throughout the space reminded us why we were there.

But there are places in the world where these basic skills are never offered. If a child and their family desires an education, they often have to travel for hours so they can learn in schools which are dilapidated and lacking in the basic necessities. But it’s through the spirit of the children, their parents and teachers that education holds a place of utmost importance.  My friend’s organization is really trying their best to feed into that need and desire to learn.


History in the making! The winning team plays the tie-breaker round.

The passion of this organization to spread literacy is unlike anything I’ve encountered. A to Z Literacy Movement wants impoverished children to have the chance to see the beauty in reading and literacy. One of the biggest hindrances in a child’s ability to learn is their socio-economic status. If a child isn’t sure where their next meal is coming from they certainly won’t spend what extra money they might have (if they have any) on a book.


MC Bob addresses the crowd.

A to Z Literacy Movement wants to try to solve that problem to the best of their ability. It is an incredibly large task for a small group of people. But this small organization with a huge heart is leading the charge to bring literacy to children everywhere.



Bacon Basket is Back!


Trivia Night is just around the corner. We really hope you will join us this Saturday, February 8th at 7:00 for a fantastic evening of fun. This is a BIG night for us as we try to raise enough money to cover the costs of our yearly goals. The book sending season begins in March, so depending on how much we raise in February, directly impacts how many books we are able to ship to vulnerable children and needy schools.

As always, we have some excellent raffle prizes and baskets to win during the evening including:  The Bacon basket, Knitting Knerds basket, Fresh Market basket, and a Smoking Hot Sauce basket. Along with great raffle prizes, we will have a silent auction running for two sets of Cubs tickets, Bulls tickets, and Blackhawks tickets.

Without you, A to Z would not be able to accomplish our mission– to improve the literacy lives of impoverished children everywhere. Thank you for believing in us and for helping us to move forward.

We challenge you to flaunt your smarts!

Name one of the museums that comprise Chicago’s Museum Campus.

Wilhelm and Jacob are two brothers who wrote over 200 fairy tales. What is their last name?

What was the original color of Peeps marshmallow candies: blue, pink, yellow, or green?

Got the answers? If so, you are not going to want to miss our annual fundraiser on Saturday, February 8th at 7:00. Gather up your friends and family for a night of fun, food, and laughs while trying to come up with answers during three rounds of trivia. There will be other games and prizes to enjoy as well. A perfect way to brighten the winter months!

Head to the website to buy your tickets, or a table, for all of your *team*.

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Telling Our Story

I dread asking for things.
It makes me uncomfortable.
I get nervous and talk even faster than I normally do. (Webmaster Kristina interjection: That’s really fast!)
But it’s that time of year again – prepping for our annual fundraiser – trying to get things ready with the help of some amazing volunteers. And as I visited local merchants today, asking for small raffle prize donations, I found myself telling our story, the A to Z story, over and over again. I talked about how we have increased our local outreach to kids and families in need here in McHenry county. I shared our work with the Garden Quarter Project and our book fair at The Clinic hosted by Immanuel Lutheran Church.  Of course, promoting the love of reading in Zambia is where we started, it feels really good to tell folks how A to Z is making a difference in their own community.
Please consider joining us on Saturday, February 8th, at 7:00 for our annual fundraiser to help us meet our annual goals. It’s going to be a fantastic time!
You can buy tickets on our website.
Hope to see you there!