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Bring Reading Rainbow’s library of interactive books & video field trips to more platforms & provide free access to classrooms in need!
Bring Reading Rainbow’s library of interactive books & video field trips to more platforms & provide free access to classrooms in need!
Bring Reading Rainbow’s library of interactive books & video field trips to more platforms & provide free access to classrooms in need!
105,857 backers pledged $5,408,916 to help bring this project to life.

48 Hours To Go: The Record for Most Backers! Plus: New & Updated Rewards!



This is it: we’ve just entered the final 48 hours of our Kickstarter.

We’ll have more news later today. This morning, just a few quick updates:

1. We now have the Most Backers for a Kickstarter Project EVER!

This morning, at about 8 AM PDT, we reached the STRETCH CHALLENGE from our previous update, and set a new Kickstarter Record for Most Backers, with over 91,600 backers!

To celebrate that milestone, all backers who have pledged $5 or more will now receive exclusive Reading Rainbow bookmarks, designed just for this Kickstarter, for FREE!

And since we’ve still got 48 hours left to go even higher, we’ve decided to add another incentive:

If we reach 100,000 BACKERS, all backers at $10 and up will receive ANOTHER FREE ADD-ON REWARD: a limited edition set of Reading Rainbow stickers, designed just for this campaign!

Together, we still have time to send an even clearer message about the number of people who believe in this cause, so please: keep spreading the word, and let your friends know that for even $1, they can be part of the biggest crowdfunding project of all time!

2. New Reward: Signed Art Prints!

A few weeks ago, we announced that our 2015 READING RAINBOW CALENDAR would feature new, original artwork created just for Reading Rainbow by an all-star line up of illustrators, including the artists behind the Harry Potter and Lemony Snicket novels.

Today, we’re also adding a limited number of rewards for SIGNED PRINTS from each of our calendar artists. For $300 each, you can get a limited edition art print from one of the artists in the calendar. You’ll let us know which artist you prefer, and we’ll send you an art print of their calendar illustration, with autographs from both the artist AND LeVar.

There are only 30 total prints available at this price, so be sure to grab yours now!

(And please note: the art print reward does not include any other rewards. If you want everything in the $200 reward package, please add $200 to your total pledge!)

3. New Rewards: Library Packages!

While this Kickstarter has been focused on bringing Reading Rainbow to underfunded schools, we know that MANY of you would also like to see the Reading Rainbow app available in public libraries.

(That’s why our COO, Sangita, spent the weekend at the ALA conference in Las Vegas, meeting with librarians to learn more about their unique needs and requests!)

And while it’s too soon to announce a version of the Reading Rainbow app designed for libraries, we’ve just added a few last-minute LIBRARY REWARDS to hold you over:

  • The HELP A LIBRARY Package ($750) lets you donate a COMPLETE DVD SET of the original Reading Rainbow television series — 152 episodes — to the local public or school library of your choice, where your entire community will be able to enjoy it. Plus, we’ll put a special label on the box (if you want), crediting you as the sponsor!
  • The LIBRARY VISIT FROM LEVAR Package ($10,000) is for those of you who would like LeVar to visit your communities for a public reading, but don’t want to host the visit at a single school. For this reward, LeVar will come to a school or library of your choice for a PUBLIC READING EVENT! Afterward, he’ll spend time meeting the sponsoring backers and their guests at a PRIVATE MEET & GREET. Plus, the library will also receive the COMPLETE DVD SET of the original television series to keep!


We’ll have more later this afternoon, but you don’t have to take our word for it.

Your Friends,

The Reading Rainbow Team


If you want to help us reach our stretch goal to support more classrooms and platforms, it's easy! Just retweet or share this message on Facebook and Twitter:

Just 48 HRS left to #HelpReadingRainbow reach $5M & 7500+ classes. Pledge NOW & join the biggest Kickstarter ever!

Ivan Askwith, Josh Shrader, and 184 more people like this update.


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    1. Missing avatar

      Evan on

      Oh no - I desperately want to pledge for a signed art print ($300), but I missed that update! Any chance I can pledge here??? Or might there be a few more offered, after the fact?

    2. Jimmy Ray Tyner 3rd on

      I just wish I knew if anyone behind this Kickstarter read my last comment? I think it's a good idea that could get some more backing for this project.

    3. Kara on

      @Frank - The initial price for the DVD set was $1,500. That was quickly reduced by half with the backer outcry. I'm assuming that there are tons of costs in regards to rights for the use of books etc in the shows. It's not just a matter of the cost of actually manufacturing additional sets. As the mom of school age kids, I've come to think of fundraisers like this - take 50% of the price and assume that's what it's actually costing you. I just mentally block out half the price and then ask myself if that cost is reasonable to me. I've used it with cases of Coke, boxes of pizza, catalogs of wrapping paper and now loads of swag + a signed artist print.

    4. Missing avatar

      Denise Smith on

      I donated because I truly believe in the project. This show made a HUGE difference in so many peoples lives. Our society needs help, thanks for thinking this up and making it happen.
      You can pass on the trinkets to someone else.

    5. Missing avatar

      Denise Smith on

      I donated because I truly believe in the project. This show made a HUGE difference in so many peoples lives. Our society needs help, thanks for thinking this up and making it happen.
      You can pass on th trinkets to someone else.

    6. Jimmy Ray Tyner 3rd on

      And more time, but I am always wishing for more time.

    7. Jimmy Ray Tyner 3rd on

      Well it would be nice if both collector's DVDs were offered digitally so that anyone could up their pledge and get either one. Like $10 for either one, or $15 for both. That seems like a reasonable donation to me and I would increase my pledge for that. Don't get me wrong, I believe in the cause because it is long over due, but I am a full time college student. If that was not so, I would also be getting one of those blue Ouyas. I wish I had known sooner, or there was still a way to get one, but after bills I make less than $300 a month. I guess what I am saying is I wish there was more digital rewards.

    8. Missing avatar

      Frank Thames

      @ Kara - I understand that it's not a retail shop. I knew I should have covered my bases for those type of responses. It's not illogical to think that it's a huge jump compared to the lower rewards. A maximum of $200 cost for a $750 level. It would be something that I would be interested in, but it's too much of a price hike for me. Unlike most rewards this level is already doing what they want it to do, but directly to a library of our choice. You are already paying for that mission but directed in a way you have control over. It's like paying $50 for a bookmark.

    9. Kara on

      Jimmy - The Star Trek DVD is the RR episode where LeVar went behind the scenes on the show. The Special Collector's Edition is the only one that is being offered digitally.

    10. Jimmy Ray Tyner 3rd on

      What is the Star Trek DVD mentioned in the rewards, and is it available as a Digital Download Add-On like the other DVD?

    11. Kara on

      @Frank - Keep in mind that this is not a retail shop - this is a fundraiser.

    12. Kara on

      @Princess Walnut - I'm going to guess that they've doubled the amount of prints that will be available. It also sounds as though our picks decided what is made - like if 45 of us pick Mary & another 15 pick Chris, those are the prints that will be made. If I'm incorrect in my assumption, I know a creator will be around soon to answer.

    13. Missing avatar

      Frank Thames

      The HELP A LIBRARY Package ($750): Why would it possibly cost $750 for DVDs being sent to a library? That's an insane mark up.

    14. Missing avatar

      Princess Walnut on

      Oops, doesn't let one edit comments. The 5 each statement was from the original calendar announcement, Update #17.

      "In fact, these artists are so committed to helping us reach more underfunded schools that each of them have also agreed to donate FIVE SIGNED PRINTS of the original work they create for the calendar, which will be introducing as new, higher-level reward tiers next week!"

    15. Missing avatar

      Princess Walnut on

      Questions. This says only 30 available signed prints at that price and that each artist is only going to do 5. So I upped my pledge to get this tier, but I am #34 and it shows 26 still available. Does this mean that when the other people before me choose MARY GRANDPRÉ as their option, that knocks her off as an option when I get to select mine? Because as is, all 6 current artists would no longer be available as choices to me at all 6 x 5 = 30 (and I am 34) $300 is a lot to spend on a signed print for me, so I need it to be very clear on if I even have a chance to get the print that I want and how the process will go as far as selection and if we get to wait to see calendar images too before blindly choosing which to go with has well. Lastly, does art print = calendar size sheet of final design or slightly larger more poster size? Thanks. :)

    16. Shannon O'Brien on

      I just doubled my original pledge. It's been on my mind for weeks now. Keep spreading literacy Mr. LaVar & Team, it's a a great concept. Glad to help. Look forward to volunteering. :D

    17. Jazz on

      fantastic update!

    18. Michelle K. T. Illg on

      Hooray for bookmarks and stickers--so long as, like Mydienon pointed out, they don't cut into the RR funds! I'm sure we'd rather see the full amount raised going toward the cause itself, rather than physical rewards. But wow, it's awesome to be part of the world's biggest fundraising campaign! And for such a worthy purpose. 94,000+ backers...well over 4.6 million, with over 40 hours left to'll be close to the 5-million stretch goal, even if it doesn't quite get there. =D

    19. Mydienon on

      Will sending bookmarks to everyone at the $5 level (plus stickers to everyone at the $10 level) cut into the funds for increasing children's access to Reading Rainbow?

      I don't need a physical reward, especially with shipping costs being so high. Is there a way I could opt out, and just keep only the digital rewards? (The downloadable digital wallpapers are cool enough for me!)

    20. Missing avatar

      Ryan Banfield on

      Upped my donation for you LeVar, thanks for all the RR and TNG memories. I really hope the res of the cast donated!

    21. aylaeh on

      wow. so i can now say that i have been a part of the top 2 kickstarter campaigns for # of backers. that is kinda awesome.

    22. M Renee Al-Eryani on

      way to go!!! congratulations everyone..i can't wait for this to get going, i can remember watching episodes of Reading Rainbow...what a wonderful gift to the children!!! AWESOME!!!

    23. Missing avatar

      Graham N.Y. on

      If you are going to exclude or request additional funds for international backers for the Reading Rainbow bookmarks, now is the time to state that information.

    24. Missing avatar

      Kelsey Smith on

      I was born in 1983 and I have loved to read since I was a child. Last weekend it made me happy to buy a calendar so that I can help fund this fantastic cause! Every person should be able to read and enjoy stories!

    25. LeVar Burton & Reading Rainbow Creator on

      @Daaaave -- as Mad1316 said, you can just add $30 to any reward level, and get the t-shirt as an add-on reward. Does that help? - Ivan

    26. Missing avatar

      David Khono Hackland on

      Congratulations, to you and all the children in the United States who will find a love of reading and lead richer lives because of the work done here!

    27. Brittany Phillips on

      If I had $300 I'd be all over this...

    28. Williesha C. Morris on

      Awesome! Just gave. :-) Thanks for the wonderful memories.

    29. Mad1316 on

      @Daaave & Headie Summers
      IIRC, $30 addon is the cost of the shirt :)

    30. Daaave & Headie Summers on

      Offer the 8-bit logo shirt for $35 and I'll up my pledge. I imagine many others currently at $5, $10, & $25 would as well.