Football team takes part in local Dr. Seuss reading

Rachel Clifford
Staff writer

Whether arriving by boat, train or car, fans of Dr. Seuss will have the opportunity to hear the famous rhyming author’s books read aloud as part of Dr. Seuss Week.

For the past several years, it has been a tradition that Murray State’s football team and staff help with the annual event.

Head football coach Chris Hatcher and members of the football team will be reading several Dr. Seuss books at the University Book and Bean.

“I’ve done Dr. Seuss Week about everywhere I’ve ever coached,” Hatcher said. “This is the 13th year in a row that I’ve participated. It’s the second year that we’ll be doing it at Book and Bean.”

Dr. Seuss Week falls around March 2, the birthday of Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss.

“We celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday each year, and then with the Lorax movie coming out, we’re going to do the Dr. Seuss story hour in honor of the Lorax,” Magan Little, assistant manager of University Book and Bean, said. “Last year we contacted Coach Hatcher to do the story hour because we wanted someone known in the community who would come in and read to the kids. We’re really excited for this year because it does line up with the Lorax movie.”

Hatcher said this is just one of the ways his team tries to act as mentors to younger students.

“We do a lot of things to get out and try to be role models to the elementary school students, not only myself, but my staff and my team,” Hatcher said. “We try to get out and do reading days and different types of promotions that schools have going on.”

In addition, Hatcher believes Dr. Seuss Week will encourage young students to become better readers.

“Dr. Seuss Week is a week not only to honor the great works of Seuss, but to also promote reading in general,” Hatcher said. “It’s just a good avenue for us to be involved and to promote the importance of being a good reader and to start reading from an early age.”

Hatcher hopes the event will not only encourage young children to become better readers, but also teach them why it’s important to read.

“It’s a good way for (elementary kids) to meet some older kids who put an importance on reading,” Hatcher said. “Seeing football players taking their time to read to young children shows just another reason why it’s so important to be readers. That’s a very important skill that we put a big emphasis on.”

Little believes the Dr. Seuss story hour will motivate children to look up to the football players as role models.

“I hope they’re all smiles when they leave here,” Little said. “They have been in the past. I hope they see the football team as a whole as a group they can look up to.”

Hatcher, too, hopes the event will allow the community to see the positive influence the football team has on younger students.

“It’s really a win-win,” Hatcher said. “We get to promote the good things our student-athletes do as well as be able to help young children see the need and importance of being good readers.”

The Dr. Seuss story hour is at 4 p.m. Tuesday at the University Book and Bean located at 1203 Chestnut Street, Suite A.