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Check out the latest news from Bernie's Book Bank!

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Basic Needs Drive Rescheduled (2/9/24)

Basic Needs Drive Rescheduled (2/9/24)

Join us and our friends on Friday, 2/9 between 10 am-2 pm for a one-stop donation drop-off. The drive will be in the Toyota Prius Lot at 111 W. Waveland, corner of Waveland & Clifton, near Wrigley Field. Please consider bringing your gently used children's books,...

For the Love of Books

For the Love of Books

Meet Riley!  Riley is passionate about reading, enjoys sharing her love for books on instagram, and actively supports Bernie’s Book Bank. Her love for reading developed at a young age, and over the years, books have become much more than stories for her. Recently, she...

Books For Refugees

Books For Refugees

Bernie's Bank collaborated with the Chicago Police Department to provide 500 Spanish/bilingual books to refugee children temporarily residing in police stations and shelters. Officer Jesus Magollan led the initiative, driven by a desire to assist these children whom...

25 Millionth Book Distribution

25 Millionth Book Distribution

On Friday, November 10th Bernie’s Book Bank distributed its 25 Millionth free book since 2009. Smiling children from Glen Flora Elementary School in Waukegan, IL greeted the Bernie’s Book Bank team as they personally distributed the books. Glen Flora Elementary...

2023 Dyer Literacy Award

2023 Dyer Literacy Award

Combating the Literacy Crisis Bernie’s Book Bank is receiving the 2023 Dyer Pearl Literacy Award, which recognizes local organizations that combat the literacy crisis in the United States. Bernie’s Book Bank founder Brian Floriani will accept the award at the National...

#65 Honor Roll Nomination Forms are Now Open

#65 Honor Roll Nomination Forms are Now Open

Attention all coaches and athletic directors! The nomination form for the 2023 #65 Honor Roll is now open.  In conjunction with the Patrick Mannelly Award, and in honor of the number he wore as a member of the Chicago Bears, the #65 Honor Roll has been created. The 65...

Book Drive Season!

Book Drive Season!

It’s book drive season! Empower Chicagoland children through book ownership by hosting a book drive. Book drives are a fun and easy way to make an impact in your community. In addition to making an impact on book ownership among Chicagoland children, book drives are...

Bernie’s Book Bank featured on CBS Chicago

Bernie’s Book Bank featured on CBS Chicago

Learn more about the damage to our facility and how we're working to get back to normal operations as quickly as possible. Thank you for all of your quick and thoughtful support through this issue![video width="1280" height="720"...

2023 Birdies & Books Charity Golf Classic

2023 Birdies & Books Charity Golf Classic

The 2023 Birdies & Books Charity Golf Classic, presented by Reed Construction, was as memorable as ever. The morning sun illuminated Shoreacres’ freshly cut grass and deep ravines as players gathered for the shotgun start. It proved to be a perfect day of golf in...

Bernie’s Book Bank Names New Executive Director

Bernie’s Book Bank Names New Executive Director

April 24, 2023 (LAKE BLUFF, Ill.)  – Today, Bernie’s Book Bank announced it has appointed Kristen Daniels as Executive Director, a new role to the organization who creates pathways to success through free, quality books for children. CEO Darrin Utynek and Founder...

Walk As One Chicago Featured in The Chicago Sun-Times

Walk As One Chicago Featured in The Chicago Sun-Times

I'm going to read them all" Grade schoolers get excited about book donation during Bernie's Book Bank's crosstown charity walk. The volunteers were midway through their 20-mile “Walk As One Chicago” fundraiser, marching from Guaranteed Rate Field to Wrigley Field and...

BookaPalooza

BookaPalooza

The first-ever BookaPalooza was a huge success! Spawning from last year's Storybook Festival, Bernie’s Book Bank wanted to bring a similar event directly to the communities served. The event took place on the south side of Chicago in Cornell Sq. Park on Saturday, July...

20 Million Books

20 Million Books

On October 13th Bernie's Book Bank reached a major milestone, the distribution of our 20 MILLIONTH free book since 2009! To celebrate this achievement Darrin Utynek, CEO of Bernie's Book Bank, led an assembly-style book delivery event at St. Ann School in partnership...

Storefront StoryWalk

Storefront StoryWalk

Storefront StoryWalk A family-friendly outdoor reading event in select communities. Bernie’s Book Bank was proud to partner with select communities to present StoreFront StoryWalks. StoryWalk® was an innovative and delightful way for children — and adults! — to enjoy...

2021 Storybook Festival

2021 Storybook Festival

Bernie's Book Bank welcomed children and families to the inaugural Storybook Festival on May 22, 2021. This new event celebrates the fun and magic of storybooks in support of our mission to increase book ownership among under-served children throughout Chicagoland. It...

2020 Impact Report

2020 Impact Report

2020 was a year like no other. Despite pandemic challenges, Bernie's Book Bank remained laser focused on providing free quality books for under-served children. Our 2020 Impact Report shares the highlights of the innovative ways we collected books, distributed books,...

Pop-Up Shop: Hoodie Sale

Pop-Up Shop: Hoodie Sale

Bernie's Book Bank is proud to host its first ever virtual Pop-Up Shop! For the month of March only the entire line of Bernie's Book Bank hoodies are on sale. Choose from four styles (see gallery below for more pictures): RE*D Chicago Flag Blue Hoodie Gray Slouch Neck...

Patrick Mannelly Award Names 2020 Winner

Patrick Mannelly Award Names 2020 Winner

On Saturday, January 9th, the 2020 Patrick Mannelly Award ceremony was livestreamed from Bernie’s Book Bank in Lake Bluff. The Patrick Mannelly Award, presented by William Blair, is named after former Chicago Bears Long Snapper Patrick Mannelly. Mannelly is widely...

The Quest For One Million Books

The Quest For One Million Books

A typical Bernie’s Book Bank book drive lasts a couple of weeks and brings in a few thousand books. The Wilkov family book drive is anything but typical. They have collected 700,000 books for Bernie’s book Bank in the past nine years and they’re not finished yet. The...

16,000+ books collected at New Trier Township Book Drive

16,000+ books collected at New Trier Township Book Drive

New Trier Township hosted their annual children’s book drive benefiting Bernie’s Book Bank on Friday, June 10th at Winnetka Presbyterian Church. While New Trier Township is no stranger to book drives, the event looked a bit different than in prior years. To ensure the...

One Day Book Drive At Big Hollow

One Day Book Drive At Big Hollow

On June 23rd, Bernie’s Book Bank tested a new type of children’s book drive at Big Hollow Primary School in Ingleside. The one day event and featured a convenient drive thru book drop. Book donors simply pulled up in front of the school and Bernie’s Book Bank team...

Literacy Is A Constitutional Right

Literacy Is A Constitutional Right

Bernie’s Book Bank was built upon the idea that owning quality books enables under-served children to read their way to a better life. In short, we believe in #fREADom for ALL children.For this reason, we are excited to share news of a landmark decision...

Where’s Bernie’s Book Bank?

Where’s Bernie’s Book Bank?

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to negatively impact lives, your support enables us to positively impact the lives of local under-served children. The map below illustrates how we continue to increase book ownership, as we have distributed 112,000 free...

Change Their Story Campaign Update

Change Their Story Campaign Update

Dear Bernie's Book Bank Supporter,First and foremost, THANK YOU! to all who have donated to the "Change Their Story" campaign. Your dollars are hard at work changing the story for under-served children across Chicagoland.In the two weeks since we launched...

Coffee?

Coffee?

Can you imagine being a child during this uncertain time who cannot attend school and has no books at home to read? As a father, and husband to a teacher, it is difficult to fathom. Nevertheless, I know this is the reality for so many children in our...

Change Their Story Campaign Launch

Change Their Story Campaign Launch

The children we serve have been disproportionately affected due to school closures during the COVID-19 pandemic. Books at home are needed more than ever, especially in the absence of e-learning in many low-income communities. Access to reading materials...

2020 Winter Volunteer-A-Thon

2020 Winter Volunteer-A-Thon

The snowy Chicagoland weather didn’t stop volunteers from making the trek to Bernie’s Book Bank on January 24 and 25 for Volunteer-A-Thon. Volunteers helped to sort, sticker and pack books for local under-served children. To keep energy high over the...

Inaugural Patrick Mannelly Award A Success

Inaugural Patrick Mannelly Award A Success

On Saturday, December 14th, Bernie’s Book Bank welcomed nearly 150 guests for the inaugural Patrick Mannelly Award presented by William Blair. This award, named after former Chicago Bears long snapper Patrick Mannelly, is given to the best FBS senior Long...

Press inquiries

If you’d like to learn more about Bernie’s Book Bank, please email or call 847.780.7323

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