Get reading for DEAR Week

Karen Vickers

Clinton Reads and United Way of Clinton County will host events this week for Drop Everything and Read Week. As part of DEAR week, the Clinton Herald is featuring local celebrities who share about their favorite children’s books. Today’s featured celebrity is Clinton Community College President Karen Vickers.

As a child I always looked forward to evening and the nightly stories my parents read to me. The thrill of selecting the story and then having the quiet time with one of my parents remains as a special memory for me. Each night I would select the same story to be read – “The Twelve Dancing Princesses.” This was a story that offered me, as a child, a certain amount of mystery, wonderment, and excitement as the princesses danced throughout the night. I also relished the time with my parents.

Once I had my own children, we also read with them each evening. Just as I did as a child, my daughters selected the book they wanted to read each night. And, just as I had as a child, we created our special time together as we read their favorite stories. I loved the time together with our daughters and truly valued sharing the joy of reading with them.

Today, our 4-year-old grandson enjoys the nightly story his mother reads to him. On very special occasions, I am able to be a part of this special time of day. While he has never selected “The Twelve Dancing Princesses” as his nightly story, together we read his favorite book about trains, cars, and airplanes. I am always thrilled to see his love for books and his eagerness to share his stories with me.

As president of Clinton Community College, I have a great appreciation for the importance reading has in our day-to-day lives. The love of reading is a skill that is developed early and one that serves us well throughout our lives. I would wish that each child has time in their day to share their favorite story with someone in their lives.

About Drop Everything and Read Week

DEAR events to promote reading will take place in the community now through April 12. Events will include guest readers at the Clinton elementary schools, story times at the Clinton Public Library, book recommendations on the Dudad’s Hallmark Facebook page and more.

For the full schedule of events, visit United Way’s Facebook page at, or the Clinton Reads Facebook page at

United Way’s Clinton Reads initiative promotes literacy through collaboration among various United Way funded community organizations in Clinton and the surrounding area. For more information on Clinton Reads, contact the United Way of Clinton County Iowa at 242-1209.