"Treme" actor and musician Wendell Pierce is scheduled to read to more than 500 New Orleans elementary school students in an effort to break the world record for largest reading lesson.
The current Guinness world record in the category is 440 participants.
The event marks the start of a years-long campaign to boost literacy rates in New Orleans by 2018, the city's 300th birthday. According to a 2012 study conducted by Central Connecticut State University, New Orleans ranked the 25th most literate city among the nation's 75 cities with populations of 250,000 or higher.
The kickoff will also be part concert.
Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews, jazz pianist Ellis Marsalis, trumpeter Irvin Mayfield and drummer Shannon Powell are among those to help launch the city's "Turn the Page" campaign on Wednesday.