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When YELL was started several years ago to raise funds for literacy programs and Newspaper In Education efforts, the community responded in a big way by taking to the streets to sell the special YELL newspapers. Never has the enthusiasm been any greater than it was on Tuesday when several hundred pepped-up volunteers started picking up their YELL newspapers at about 5:30 a.m. during a light rain.

The rain couldn't dampen the spirits of those hardy volunteers, however. They managed to make the best of the situation and give everything they had to the sales effort that would be needed over the next couple of hours. That's all it took -- a couple of hours -- before the 1998 YELL edition sold out. Overall, the YELL project raised some $9,000 more than last year's campaign. That's a healthy boost for literacy and the NIE program.

How can you adequately thank those volunteers -- and all those responsible for putting together this year's YELL newspaper? Just say the words: Thank you. Thank you for your good spirits and your willingness to get up very early on YELL day.

Most of all, thank you to all those who purchased the 10,000 YELL papers. Some of you wanted the Mark McGwire special section. Some of you wanted a Beanie Baby. All of you wanted to help with the many efforts to promote literacy.

That's what it takes. Thank you.