Graduation ceremonies have been cancelled across the nation due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Random House Children’s Books together with Dr. Seuss Enterprises want to recognize the Class of 2020. Inspired by the 30th anniversary of Dr. Suess’ iconic book, the Oh, the Places You’ll Go! Virtual Graduation Celebration (#ohtheplaces2020) is launching to allow everyone to join in the celebration.

Oh, the Places You'll Go!

Astronaut Scott Kelly announced the exciting news on NBC’s TODAY Show. While setting the record for the longest spaceflight by an American (340 days) Kelly saw places that very few on Earth have, and he offers an inspirational perspective on our current situation and what this moment means for the class of 2020: “It is an honor to join the Oh, the Places You’ll Go! campaign to recognize graduates across the country, who are beginning their journey of discovery and achievement,” says Kelly.

John Cena will kick off the virtual festivities on May 1 with a “commencement keynote” that includes a reading from Oh, the Places You’ll Go! and his own words of wisdom for graduates of all ages. Fans can tune in on Cena’s Twitter feed at 12 p.m. ET, and his reading will be available on Facebook, where additional readings and remarks will roll out throughout May. Participants will include some of our most honored educators and first responders, as well as celebrities, authors, and illustrators.

Random House Children’s Books and Dr. Seuss Enterprises are calling for nationwide support of the Class of 2020 with a campaign encouraging people to post a photo in celebration of their 2020 graduate, or post their own graduation photo using #ohtheplaces2020, and tagging three friends to continue the chain. For the month of May, Random House Children’s Books and Dr. Seuss Enterprises will donate one book to First Book (up to 20,020!) for every in-feed post tagged with #ohtheplaces2020. First Book will distribute donations to classroom libraries in the fall in honor of the educators of the class of 2020 who would have been recognized at graduation ceremonies.

Collaborating with Penguin Random House Audio/Listening Library, the campaign will also feature inspirational quotes from the book on social media, read by audiobook narrator John Lithgow.

For fun-filled activities for hosting graduation parties at home, such as creating your own graduation hat, diploma, and decorations, visit Seussville.

—Jennifer Swartvagher

Featured photo: Random House Children’s Books

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