Boston Celtics Players Participate in Reading Event at the Franklin Park Zoo in Partnership with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

BOSTON – The Boston Celtics and students from the Henderson Elementary School shared an afternoon of reading today at the Franklin Park Zoo as part of a season-long partnership between the Boston Celtics and global education leader Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH).

Boston Celtics players Kelly Olynyk and Phil Pressey and HMH’s Bianca Olson, SVP, Corporate Affairs, read HMH favorites Little Gorilla by Ruth Bornstein and If Anything Ever Goes Wrong at the Zoo by Jane Dyer and Mary Hendrick, to the children and sparked a discussion on the importance of reading.

 “I really enjoyed this event. It was great to be able to interact with the kids,” Kelly Olynyk said. “Hopefully, we were able to make an impact on some of them, while also educating them on the value of reading. It was a rewarding day.”

“Like the Celtics, HMH is committed providing students with quality educational content and experiences that will inspire them and set them up for future success,” said Bianca Olson, Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs at HMH. “Today’s event was a great example of our shared goals in action.”

The players also shared the titles of some of their own favorite books with the Henderson Elementary students, stressing the importance of reading at a young age and inspiring curiosity in learning. The players and the students were able to meet and interact with the Zoo’s education program animals and tour the Tropical Forest Pavilion. With lush greenery, waterfalls and an array of fascinating animals, the Tropical Forest immerses guests into a tropical rainforest experience including the opportunity to stand face to face with western lowland gorillas at one of the best indoor gorilla exhibits found anywhere.

Read to Achieve        Read to Achieve

(pic left) Lucky, Franklin Park Zoo Educator, Kelly Olynyk, Phil Pressey, Bianca Olson, and Henderson Elementary students at the Franklin Park Zoo.
(pic right) Phil Pressey, Henderson Elementary student, and Kelly Olynyk reading "Little Gorilla".
Photos by: Steve Babineau



About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (NASDAQ:HMHC) is a global learning company with the mission of changing people’s lives by fostering passionate, curious learners. Among the world’s largest providers of pre-K–12 education solutions and one of its longest-established publishing houses, HMH combines cutting-edge research, editorial excellence and technological innovation to improve teaching and learning environments and solve complex literacy and education challenges. HMH’s interactive, results-driven education solutions are utilized by 50 million students in over 150 countries, and its renowned and awarded novels, non-fiction, children's books and reference works are enjoyed by readers throughout the world. For more information, visit

About The Boston Celtics
A charter member of the Basketball Association of America (which evolved into the National Basketball Association) since 1946, the Boston Celtics have won a record 17 NBA Championships, including eight (8) in a row from 1959-1966, winning their first title in 1957 and their most recent in 2008. The Celtics have long stood for equality, and respect, including hiring the first African American Coach and starting the first all black starting five. In addition, 35 former Celtics players, management or staff have been inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. In December 2002 the team returned to local ownership for the first time since 1963. For more information on the Celtics, log on to

Media Contact:
Heather Walker
Boston Celtics
(O) 617-854-8072
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