Imagination Library

Dolly presents 25 millionth Imagination Library book

Published July 20, 2010 / Last Updated August 23, 2015
Team Dolly

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Team Dolly

Dolly presented an Alabama boy with the 25 millionth Imagination Library book

In 2010, racing across borders and gaining speed, “The Little Engine That Could,” was chug chug chugging along, while the actual book itself arrived in mailboxes, much to the delight of 249,125 children under five. With over 1,300 operating programs in three countries, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library was mailing 560,000 books a month, a grand total of 7.1 million this particular year.

In July, The Junior League of Birmingham, and Dolly herself presented the 25 millionth book to Kumar Smith.

“It was beautiful,”

mother Shalisha Stewart said of her family’s experience.

“She sang Kumar a song, ‘Celebrate the Dreamer in You.’ She wrote it for him. He was like, ‘She wrote me a song?’ And I told him that he was the hero of the day.”

Knox County Schools in Tennessee completed the year-long study of their new kindergartners, and in Michigan, the Great Start Collaborative commissioned a study by Michigan State University on the same age group. Children enrolled in Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library performed better on all assessments than children who were not enrolled. In addition, the University of Alaska Anchorage researchers, completed evaluation studies of Imagination Library demonstrating that children participating in the program are more enthusiastic about reading, read to more often, and perceived by parents to be better prepared for school. While the books are free to families, the lasting impact of the program is priceless.

 

Team DollyDolly presents 25 millionth Imagination Library book

Dolly’s Imagination Playhouse

Published June 17, 2005 / Last Updated August 23, 2015
Team Dolly

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Team Dolly

Dolly’s Imagination Playhouse brings the joy of reading to life at Dollywood

Dolly’s Imagination Playhouse, featuring the Penguin Players, brings many of the classic children’s books from her Imagination Library to life. The first production was of “The Little Engine that Could,” Dolly’s personal favorite and the first book mailed to children in the program.

Team DollyDolly’s Imagination Playhouse

Imagination Library National Replication Effort

Published March 1, 2000 / Last Updated August 23, 2015
Team Dolly

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Team Dolly

Dolly’s Imagination Library available across USA with national replication efforts

In 2000, the Imagination Library took a bold step forward in the campaign to inspire a love of reading and made the program available for national replication. Always leading off with Dolly’s favorite title, “The Little Engine That Could,” this millennial expansion was the start of delivering this popular favorite as well as more quality books into the homes of many more children.

The Dollywood Foundation was focused on the further development of this program and promoting it throughout the entire country. Sponsors and community champions began to emerge across the country to finance the cost of the books and the mailing expense. Locally managed and designed to reflect the unique personality of the community, each operating Affiliate is responsible for the program’s longevity.

Throughout the year, negotiations continued with publishers to improve the quality of the individual titles while maintaining if not lowering, the cost. Combining Affiliate strategies and ongoing analytics brought more attention to early human growth, through studies on brain research, language skills, motor development, socialization or literacy skills, confirming that the years between birth and five are the most critical time in the development of a child.

Team DollyImagination Library National Replication Effort

Imagination Library launches in Sevier County, TN

Published December 13, 1995 / Last Updated August 23, 2015
Team Dolly

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Team Dolly

The Dollywood Foundation launches Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in Sevier County, TN

Inspired by her humble beginnings and her big childhood dreams, Dolly created the Imagination Library to instill a love of reading and learning in the children within her community. The book gifting program sends a free, age-appropriate book to registered children every month from birth to age five. Dolly wanted to get kids excited about books and feel the magic books create. Reflecting on her vision, Dolly said,

“My dream has been for every child to have a library of books that their parents can read to them from, from the time they are born until they start school. The Imagination Library was designed to help children Dream More, Learn More, Care More, Be More and by golly it’s really working.”

The program was made available to all children in Sevier County, TN under age five. Each child received the same introductory book, which happens to be Dolly’s favorite children’s story, “The Little Engine That Could,” by Watty Piper. From birth to age five, children receive a 60-book library completely free and delivered right to their mailbox, with their name on the label.

The Imagination Library’s first book order totaled 1,760 books mailed to the children of Sevier County, TN.

Team DollyImagination Library launches in Sevier County, TN