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Choose Kind Chicago Adds Second Show at Mother McAuley

By Howard Ludwig | October 1, 2015 11:17am
 Mary Cate Lynch, of Beverly, will throw out the first pitch at the White Sox game on Sunday. Choose Kind Chicago, an event featuring the 3-year-old girl, her mom and author R.J. Palacio will be held on Oct. 17 at Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School in Mount Greenwood.
Mary Cate Lynch, of Beverly, will throw out the first pitch at the White Sox game on Sunday. Choose Kind Chicago, an event featuring the 3-year-old girl, her mom and author R.J. Palacio will be held on Oct. 17 at Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School in Mount Greenwood.
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MOUNT GREENWOOD — A second show has been added for Choose Kind Chicago, an event featuring author R.J. Palacio, author of the preteen novel "Wonder," and Beverly's Kerry Ryan Lynch.

Palacio and Lynch will share the stage at 5:15 p.m. Oct. 17 at Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School in Mount Greenwood. The first show at 2 p.m. sold out in less than 24 hours.

Tickets for the event at 3737 W. 99th St. cost $3 and sales for the second show will be limited to three per person. The proceeds will be used to buy copies of Palacio's New York Times bestseller for low-income schools, Lynch said.

Ald. Matt O'Shea (19th) will be on hand for both shows, and Lynch will introduce the author ahead of a question-and-answer session. But time will prohibit the second show from including a signing event with the author after the presentation.

Presigned books will be available after the second show at the 900-seat auditorium.

Lynch, a graduate of Mother McAuley, will meet Palacio for the first time on stage with her daughter Mary Cate. The mother-daughter team has been using "Wonder" to emphasize the book's underlying message to "Choose Kind."

The pair have visited 105 schools since May 2012 to talk about Apert syndrome — a rare disorder caused by an extra protein on one gene. Mary Cate was diagnosed with the condition shortly after being born.

Apert syndrome results in extra bones and cartilage, causing a misshapen skull and melded fingers and toes. About 25 children are born with this craniofacial condition in the United States each year.

Ahead of their school presentation, Lynch asks teachers and students to read Palacio's novel. The book details the life of August Pullman, a boy born with a facial deformity. His birthday is in October — hence the date for Choose Kind Chicago, Lynch said.

"Wonder" is told from Augie's perspective, as well as the perspective of classmates, his sister, her boyfriend and others.

Before the Choose Kind Chicago presentation at Mother McAuley, Palacio to be the guest of honor at a special VIP session for some 20 families impacted by craniofacial disorders from the Chicago area.

The Quilter's Trunk, a new store in Beverly for quilting and sewing enthusiasts, is also participating in the event. The store at 10352 S. Western Ave. is asking customers to help sew a pair of Choose Kind quilts for Mary Cate and Palacio. The quilts will be given to the author and her 3-year-old fan on Oct. 17.

To further celebrate Choose Kind Chicago, the Chicago White Sox will host Mary Cate and her family on Sunday. The preschooler will throw out the first pitch at the final game of the regular season at 2:10 p.m. at U.S. Cellular Field.

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