The third annual Dolly Disco was filled with roller skating, Dolly Parton music and big, blonde wigs.
Held on Feb. 4, the event’s goal was to support childrens’ literacy through the United Way of Vermillion’s Imagination Library.
Imagination Library is a program started by Dolly Parton. According to the Imagination Library website, the singer started the program in 1995. In 2000, she announced the program would be available to any community willing to partner with her to support it locally.
It started in Tennessee and eventually expanded to the rest of the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, said Kelsey Collier-Wise, executive director of the United Way of Vermillion.
The Imagination Library is a program that gives free books to kids who are five years old and younger in Vermillion, Collier-Wise said.
“The DollyWood Foundation are the ones that actually figure out the books, pick books that are age appropriate and then they ship the books from Tennessee,” Collier-Wise said. “Each area can fund it and do the recruitment of the students.”
Clay County’s program was started in 2005. There are 286 children currently enrolled in the Imagination Library through the United Way of Vermillion.
Dolly Disco is an event that Collier-Wise and Bekki Enquist-Schroeder, event organizer and owner of the Spa at Wynie Mae’s, came up with to raise money for Vermillion’s Imagination Library.
This year, Collier-Wise said they were also able to raise more than $1,000 through donations accepted on the United Way of Vermillion’s Facebook page before the event took place. They raise money for the Imagination Library through Dolly Disco and through workplace campaigns.
Enquist-Schroeder said children’s literacy is important for several reasons.
“If you can’t read, it sets you back,” Enquist-Schroeder said. “You have to be able to read everything, text messages, stop signs, to get a job, to run a school.”
Enquist-Schroeder also gives free haircuts to children that come in to the Spa at Wynie Mae’s and read her a story.
Collier-Wise said she likes what the Imagination Library stands for.
“The thing I like about the Imagination Library, is that the only requirement is that the child is between 0 and 5 and lives in our coverage area,” Collier-Wise said. “For some of those kids, it’s probably one of 100 books that they have, but for some of them it might be the only books they have.”
Collier-Wise said people can help the Imagination Library by donating on their website or by coming to the annual Dolly Disco.
“We really want to get the word out too,” Collier-Wise said.
People who have kids in the age limit, or know anyone who does, can sign-up through their website or at the Vermillion Public Library.