Dozens of neighbors turned out at the Landmark Theater Sunday afternoon for the Big Read's kick off event. The Onondaga County program encourages families to read one book and then discuss it during the winter months.
This year's book is titled "The Namesake." It talks about a couple moving from India to the United States and how different cultures merge together.
The book is particularly relevant to Syracuse which has the third largest refugee population in the country. For the first time since the program started in 2001, it's using a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Thanks to the grant, Sunday's event featured dancing and tattoo paintings in addition to an excerpt. Many at the kick off say they have a connection to the book and want to share that with others in the community.
Prabha Agrawal was attending the event in Syracuse. "That really represents how someone moving here from far overseas, how their translation happened, how they get into America. I'm very attached to that book, so that was the reason for me to be here," says Agrawal.
The Big Read is planning future events, including discussion groups and a viewing of the movie 'The Namesake.' For more information on the Big Read in Onondaga County click here.