There’s still time for alumni, children, grandchildren and other relatives to register for the Dr. Seuss birthday celebration on Sunday, Feb. 24, from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Donius University Center.
The event includes a variety of activities, including Dr. Seuss-themed crafts, science exploration, a scavenger hunt, snacks and—one of the children’s favorites—story readings from some of Dr. Suess’ best-loved books. (The legendary author’s 109th birthday would have been March 2.) Student volunteers also plan to lead children through a fun Dr. Seuss-themed dance, and photos may be taken with Dr. Seuss characters.
There will be a new addition this year, where guests will have a chance to “Meet the Maryville Authors.” Two alumni who wrote children’s books will be on hand, selling copies of their works with profit from that day’s sales being donated to benefit Maryville’s School of Education.
The two featured books will be Molly Green Likes Worms by Doss Margiotta, ’69 and Easter Bunny’s Amazing Day by Carol Benoist, ’70 and Cathy Gilmore. Margiotta, a former kindergarten teacher, always tried to help her students “understand that everything on earth has a purpose, and to respect all life.” An avid gardener, she taught her students about the importance of worms and the ways they contribute to healthy soil and gardens. She saw her children’s book, which she worked on with business partner Suzanne Collins of Ladue, as a means to encourage reading and to teach children about science. She was looking forward to having the book play a role at the Dr. Seuss event. “If you can get little children to fall in love with stories and books, you have a reader for life,” she said. Her book was illustrated by Patricia L. Nagy.
Carol Benoist, ’70, said she had been telling the story from Easter Bunny’s Amazing Day for about a decade before turning it into a written book, illustrated by Jonathan Sundy. The work tells a story intended to share the religious meaning of Easter. “Someone said as an author the joy isn’t in having it published, and it’s not in making the money, but it’s the joy of having people enjoy the book. That has been absolutely heartwarming,” she said. Benoist is a psychotherapist who works with corporations and runs wellness classes as co-owner of Life Change presents Prescription for Wellness in a Stressed Out World.
The Dr. Seuss Birthday Bash this year is again chaired by Moira Kelly Steuterman, ’73 and Addie Dorsey Tomber, ’68. The volunteers, faculty and students who organize the event work on it well in advance. Last year, about 250 people total attended the gathering. Organizers anticipate another fun-filled event this year.
A grant from the Missouri National Education Association written by the University’s Education Club members helps support this event and a Dr. Seuss website with curriculum and ideas for teachers.
Register at http://alumni.maryville.edu/DrSeuss or call 314.529.6867. For more information visit https://blogs.maryville.edu/doctorseuss or contact Peggy Michelson at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please register by noon on Friday, Feb. 22, for this event.