Country Inns & Suites By Carlson(R) Announces Fourth Year Charity Donation

In-House Library Program Raises $60,000 for ProLiteracy Worldwide

MINNEAPOLIS, Feb. 16 /PRNewswire/ — Country Inns & Suites By Carlson(R), the successful international mid-tier lodging chain of Minneapolis, Minn.- based Carlson Hotels Worldwide, today announced its 2004 contribution of $15,000 to its charitable partner ProLiteracy Worldwide on behalf of its Book It And Return program. This donation brings Country Inns & Suites total contribution to $60,000 since the program’s inception.

Launched in 2001, Book It And Return is the brand’s in-house lending library program at Country Inns & Suites North American properties. The program was implemented to commemorate the brand’s 98 percent guest return rating which Country Inns & Suites has enjoyed for the past 13 years. As a way to thank guests for their loyalty to the brand, Country Inns & Suites lends guests complimentary books based on the assurance they will return them during their next visit. For every book returned to Country Inns & Suites, the company makes a $5 donation to ProLiteracy Worldwide.

“Thanks to the generous support of Country Inns & Suites, ProLiteracy has been able to equip hundreds of local literacy programs with the essential training resources required to teach adults and young people how to read,” said Kirk Shisler, vice president of Fund Development for ProLiteracy Worldwide. Following are specific examples of how the Book It and Return program has benefited literacy:

— Supports the development of training, instructional, and accreditation
resources to strengthen 1,200 local affiliates and more than 130,000
literacy volunteers and certified tutor trainers in all 50 states and
the District of Columbia. ProLiteracy and its affiliates serve nearly
250,000 adults and families every year.

— Supports ProLiteracy’s National Book Scholarship Fund, a program that
awards books and training materials to local literacy programs
nationwide. More than 950 local literacy programs have received
awards. As a result, more than 225,000 adults, youth and children
have improved their reading skills.

— Supports literacy training programs in 51 developing nations that are
focused on enabling thousands of women and their families to gain
literacy skills to improve their health and nutrition, establish
micro-enterprises, and advocate for human rights.

“We are very pleased with the success of Book It And Return and are proud to be partnering with ProLiteracy Worldwide to help increase the awareness of literacy. As a strong advocate of improving reading skills, we added a children’s section in our library to provide reading materials for our younger guests for the opportunity to read more,” said Nancy Johnson, executive vice president/brand leader, Country Inns & Suites By Carlson.

Book It And Return offers copies of bestsellers; business books; novels; children’s books and self-improvement books among many others. New book titles are added throughout the year.

About Country Inns & Suites By Carlson

As a leader in the mid-scale hotel segment, Country Inns & Suites By Carlson locations feature residential architecture and home-like interior design with highlights that include hardwood flooring, lobby fireplace and front porch.

Each hotel offers many upgraded amenities such as complimentary breakfast, in-room hair dryer, coffee maker, iron and ironing board, and weekday morning newspaper. The brand is known for its consistently high quality accommodations and personal, warm hospitality providing guests “A Cozy Stay at a Comfortable Price.”

Reservations can be made online at http://www.countryinns.com/ , through a travel agent or by calling toll-free at 800-456-4000. There are over 345 locations worldwide.

Country Inns & Suites By Carlson(R) is part of Minneapolis, Minn.-based Carlson Hotels Worldwide whose brands also include Regent International Hotels; Radisson Hotels & Resorts(R); Park Plaza(R) Hotels & Resorts and Park Inn(R).

About ProLiteracy Worldwide

ProLiteracy Worldwide is a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to helping adults of all ages improve their lives and their communities by learning reading, writing, math and problem-solving skills. ProLiteracy Worldwide is represented in 45 developing countries as well as in the U.S. and serves more than 350,000 adult new learners around the world each year. Its purpose is to sponsor educational programs and services to empower adults and their families by assisting them to acquire the literacy practices and skills they need to function more effectively in their daily lives and participate in the transformation of their societies. Its publishing division, New Readers Press, produces and distributes approximately 500 titles of adult educational books and materials to literacy organizations, schools, libraries, and other institutions nationwide. New Readers Press also publishes News for You, a weekly newspaper for adult new readers, which is read by 90,000 adult learners. For more information, visit http://www.proliteracy.org/ .

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