The first Dolly Parton Imagination Library of the Wiregrass kicks off

This event is all to benefit the Coffee County Imagination Library which is promoting literacy to the next generation of readers.
Published: Jan. 19, 2023 at 5:16 PM CST
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ENTERPRISE, Ala. (WTVY) - One country music star is working to improve reading skills across the country, including right here in the Wiregrass.

While the real Dolly Parton will not be at Enterprise State Community College, ten lovely ladies are competing to see who looks the most like the iconic star.

This event is all to benefit the Coffee County Imagination Library which is promoting literacy to the next generation of readers.

Dolly Parton is known for her music, style, personality, and even a theme park.

But, she is also famous for her dedication to literacy. Her father was unable to read or write.

“The Dolly Parton Imagination Library was started by Dolly about 35 years ago in tribute to her dad,” Judy Penuel, Director of the Coffee County Imagination Library, explained. “She knew the importance of children being able to read.”

The program mails children one book a month from birth to age 5.

The Coffee County Imagination Library is the first to be founded in the Wiregrass area.

“It’s amazing how it’s spread out. It’s in five different countries.” Penuel said. “There’s over two million books a month being mailed out to children around the world.”

During Governor Ivey’s inaugural address this week, she announced that the state will be partnering with the Imagination Library to continue their mission of literacy.

Instructional partner with Enterprise High School Susan Burns said, “We really emphasize the fact that ready is not just an English education problem. It’s not just an objective or goal for reading in the classroom. But those life-long learners, those life-long readers, are going to be more successful and have an easier time reaching their goals.”

Of course, it wouldn’t be Dolly’s organization without glitz and glam.

The Dolly Look-Alike Contest acts as a fundraiser for the books and shipping costs.

“Who doesn’t love Dolly and the persona of Dolly,” Penuel told News 4. “And we thought it would be really fun to celebrate that, to celebrate her persona.”

If you are interested in supporting the program or what to sign your child up for the library you can visit the Coffee County Imagination Library’s website.

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