The local Imagination Library – Books from Birth Storybook Breakfast, presented by Murfreesboro Medical Center Pediatrics and ENT, returns in social-distance style on Saturday, April 17, 2021 at Cannonsburgh Village.

The family literacy event, which sold out and raised nearly $30,000 for the Dolly Parton Imagination Library at its inaugural event last winter, will once again feature book character photo opportunities, breakfast from Chick-fil-A, and other activities for children of all ages in an outdoor setting.

“After the response from the first Storybook Breakfast, the event committee was determined to offer families the opportunity to connect with their favorite storybook characters. We are moving the breakfast to Cannonsburgh Village to allow for families to practice social distancing,” says Casey Warren, vice president of development and engagement of the United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties.

Enrollment in the Imagination Library program has continued to grow, even during the challenges Covid-19 has placed on the community, with almost 16,000 children enrolled in the program from Rutherford and Cannon counties. The program ensures young families get a solid literacy foundation with a monthly book in the mail from birth through age 5.

Half of the funding for the program is provided by the Governor’s Early Literacy Foundation, but the other half must be raised by a sustaining partner in each community. Locally, the United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties serves as the sustaining partner.

United Way is grateful to sponsors Murfreesboro Medical Clinic Pediatrics and ENT, Republic Services, Dr. James E. and Mrs. Beverly R. Calder, Talbott Law, Estate and Business Planning, Murfree and Goodman | PLLC, Smart Bank, The Avenue Murfreesboro, Redstone Federal Credit Union, State Farm | Andy Womack, MTAR, Red Realty, and Chick-fil-a Murfreesboro who have already committed to support the event this year.

Brannon Mangus, M.D., MMC ENT physician said in regard to Murfreesboro Medical Clinic’s support of the event, “Hearing and speech is our mission. Supporting Books from Birth gives MMC ENT another avenue to help children in our community further language development.”

Aaron Ward, M.D., MMC Pediatrician also added, “As pediatricians we promote the health and development of children. By supporting an early literacy program like Books From Birth, we are able to make an impact on the early development and academic success of children in our community. In addition to the educational benefits, early literacy programs, through caregiver-child interaction, provide healthy together time for families and create greater emotional closeness among families.”

Tickets for the event are $15 per person, with a $60 household maximum, and can be purchased at yourlocaluw.org/storybook.

To sponsor the Storybook Breakfast, contact Casey Warren at Casey.Warren@yourlocaluw.org or call 615-893-7303. Learn more about Books from Birth at yourlocaluw.org/booksfrombirth.