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"Rafting for Reading" Event to be Held August 6th

GATLINBURG -- Rafting in the Smokies, which runs rafting trips on the Big Pigeon River, has partnered with the United Way of Sevier County to raise money for a new pre-kindergarten reading initiative.

The project, "Rafting for Reading," is offering a special $10 discount on trips taken on August 6th. Every discounted trip will generate a $5 donation to United Way's early reading initiative.

Rafters must mention United Way when making reservations to receive the discount. The regular price of the 1 1/2 hour trip is $39.

The United Way of Sevier County, in cooperation with the Dollywood Foundation and Head Start programs in Sevier County, is building a volunteer-based reading initiative that provides an enthusiastic adult reader for 20 minutes per day to the 4-year-old children in the county's 10 Head Start programs.

The goal is to increase the vocabulary and love of reading among 4-year-olds before they reach kindergarten.

"Rafting in the Smokies has been providing family adventures for 33 years, and we see 'Rafting for Reading' as a great way to support our community," said Beth Justice, Sales and Marketing Manager.

Rafting in the Smokies has a new attraction called the Family Adventure Island that features ziplines, a ropes course, a nature trail, swings and picnic tables.

Reservations can be made by calling 800-PRO-RAFT (800-776-7238) or 865-436-5008.

Published August 1, 2011

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