This show has been canceled as of 3/16/2020, please call the Box Office for a refund or account credit.
Proceeds for this event will help local children register for the Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library program through their local affiliate, Marietta Community Foundation. The Imagination Library program is a book-gifting program that prepares our youngest generations for a life of learning!
Purchase two tickets and sponsor one child!
During the last 25 years, Dolly Parton has quietly built one of the largest literacy-focused non-profits in the world.
Started as a gift for the children of her hometown of Sevierville, Tennessee, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in
now active in all 50 states and five countries and delivers more than 1.5 million free, age-appropriate books to
children every month.
The Library That Dolly Built goes behind-the-scenes of this unprecedented program to show how one of the most
famous performers in the world has developed an efficient and effective program, beloved almost universally by its
Featuring original interviews with authors, policy makers, Imagination Library staff, recipients, and the legend herself,
Dolly Parton, The Library That Dolly Built introduces the viewer to all aspects of the Imagination Library, from how
the books are selected and mailed to how the Imagination Library was originally formulated and where they expect
to go in the future.
The film also provides a glimpse of the profound impact the Imagination Library has on the people it serves by
sharing the stories of people like John Gibeau. Gibeau runs an Imagination Library program in rural Minnesota. His
town has no library, school or bookstore. Through tears, Gibeau explains that without the Imagination Library some
children in his community would not have any books.
Weaved throughout the story of the Imagination Library is a biographical sketch of Dolly Parton, featuring rare
photos and films from her childhood. Unlike most biographies of Dolly, it doesn’t focus on her music. Instead it
demonstrates that at every point in her career, any time she has had success, Dolly Parton has come back to
Sevierville to give back to her people.
Dolly has gifted her story, her music, her inspiration and her Imagination Library to people throughout the world. It
is her Imagination Library, however, that will most likely be remembered as the sweetest gift of all.
I was introduced to the Imagination Library shortly before my wife and I moved to Tennessee. I immediately fell in
love with the program. It was so simple: sign up, get free books. There was no catch. There was nothing
controversial. Just free books going to kids’ homes.
Then my son, Henry, was born. We immediately signed him up for the Imagination Library. When he started getting
his books, I became obsessed with the program. I needed to know everything: How do they pick the books? How
is Dolly involved in the program? How does one even mail a million books?
The more I learned about the program, the more amazed I was. Like Dolly herself, the Imagination Library is
deceptively simple. It’s easy not to appreciate the significant impact it’s having on our world.
With The Library That Dolly Built, I hope to share the story of this program with the world. I want everyone to see
the Imagination Library as I see it and to understand the way Dolly Parton has not only shaped this program, but
has consistently sought to support my adopted home of East Tennessee.
-Nick Geidner 2020