Stone County residents aim to show their true colors for ‘Books for Babies’

Several Stone County businesses and organizations are taking part in a good cause for patients at Batson Children’s Hospital in Jackson.

The first annual Books for Babies coloring book and crayon drive is underway and county residents have several ways to contribute.

The organization, founded by Derrick Cotton and others last year in Greenville, is attempting to gather coloring books, crayons, colored pencils, markers and sketch pads to be delivered to the hospital September 28.

“We had a men’s group that participated last year and it was a great success,” said Steven Mills of South Mississippi United. “We definitely wanted to be a part of it this year.”

Pizza Inn of Wiggins is serving as a collection point, as is Gypsy Girl’s Boutique, Bangs Salon, Flint Creek Physical Therapy Jamie’s Performing Arts Studio.

The Stone County Community 4-H Club decided to take the drive on as a community service project and has several members collecting donations.

“We saw it on the Batson web page and decided it would be a good project for us,” said Julie Dobbs Plemons of the 4-H club.

The Stone County Enterprise will donate the use of its circulation van and fuel to transport all Stone County donations to Jackson on September 21.

Cotton has been overwhelmed by the response, both last year and this year.

“When we started it, we thought it would just be a few people locally,” he said. “It quickly spread statewide and the response has been phenomenal.”

The group delivered more than 4,000 coloring books and more than 3,000 boxes of crayons last year.

A column of motorcycles, guided by the Mississippi Highway Patrol led a cargo trailer filled with donations from Greenville to Jackson and the same event is planned for this year.

“With the interest I’ve seen, I do believe this year is on track to be as good or better than last,” Cotton said.

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