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First ‘Dolly Day’ to take place Aug. 9 at Marshall and statewide

More than 50,000 West Virginia children under five years old are registered to receive a free book each month through Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library program.  The free books are offered to all children in the state, from birth to age five, regardless of family income.

Last year, during a special event where Dolly Parton visited Charleston, West Virginia, to celebrate the statewide expansion of the program, Gov. Jim Justice declared Aug. 9 as Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library Day.

This year, to celebrate the first “Dolly Day” in West Virginia, Marshall’s June Harless Center, a partner with the Imagination Library, will host a read-aloud event of a popular book from the program. It will take place Wednesday, Aug. 9, beginning at 9:30 a.m. on the Memorial Student Center plaza on the Huntington campus. It is just one of a number of similar events across West Virginia.

Partners in various locations across the state have invited families to join them for read-aloud events to celebrate the program and a help spread a love of reading. For a complete list of read-aloud events occurring across the state, please visit Please note that some events may require pre-registration or are reserved for specific age groups. You may reach out to the contact listed for each event for more information.

The Imagination Library mails more than two million high-quality, age-appropriate books each month to enrolled children from birth to age five.  Parton envisioned creating a lifelong love of reading and inspiring children to “Dream More, Learn More, Care More and Be More.”

Parents or guardians who are interested in registering their children for the Imagination Library program may do so online by filling out a brief form at  Registered children will begin receiving books at their home addresses approximately eight to 10 weeks after their forms are received.  The first book distributed is always the children’s classic “The Little Engine That Could.”

The program has been widely researched and results demonstrate its positive impact on early childhood development and literacy skills.  Penguin Random House is the exclusive publisher for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.  For more information, please visit

For further information, contact Brittany Fike, program coordinator, by e-mail at