Dolly Parton's Imagination Library literacy event

Area children can go on a worm hunt, read some worm-themed books, learn about how worms help the earth and even get a worm tattoo at this year’s Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library literacy event.


The Imagination Library, the United Way of Monongalia and Preston Counties, The Shack Neighborhood House and Starting Points Family Resource Center will hold a literacy event from 5:30-7 p.m. April 17 at Mylan Park Elementary School. It will feature story walks, book readings, crafts, refreshments and more to promote The Imagination Library. And this year’s theme centers on the creepy and crawly – worms!


Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, supported locally by Women United, is a free program that provides children ages newborn to 5 years old with a new book each month. Parents can sign their children up for the program during the event.


Introducing a child to the world of reading is one of the best ways to help them become successful in life. Reading helps in the following ways:

  • Reading with your child expands his or her brain development by increasing vocabulary usage and language skills. It also helps them become more creative and aware of the world.
  • Children will learn to focus and gain good listening skills.
  • Books can help minimize scary things so children are less anxious and more accepting of new experiences.
  • Reading books with your child will increase intelligence and school readiness.


Parton launched the Imagination Library in 1995 as a way to gift books to children all over the world. As of March 2019, nearly 118 million free books have been distributed to the United States, Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom. To date, nearly 1.4 million children have been registered to receive a specially selected, age-appropriate book every month through the mail.


“Inspiring kids to love to read became my mission,” Parton said. “In the beginning, my hope was simply to inspire the children in my home county, but here we are today with a worldwide program that gives a book a month to well over 1 million children.”


Volunteers are needed to help with this event. If you’re interested in volunteering, visit To learn more about the Imagination Library, visit To learn more about the United Way of Monongalia and Preston Counties, visit