Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon wore the signature red and white top hat as he joined three other “celebrity readers” in reading books to children at the Morris County Library for its annual celebration of the birthday of Dr. Seuss.
As the Cat In The Hat would say, the Friday, March 1 afternoon event organized by Library Director Susan Calantone scored high marks on the Phunometer as Sheriff Gannon, Morris County Freeholder Heather Darling, county Administrator John Bonanni and Assistant County Treasurer Cathy Burd took turns reading books of their choice to the crowd of children.
The late Theodor Seuss Geisel – better known as Dr. Seuss – was born on March 2, 1904. Following his death in 1991, the National Education Association in 1997 launched the initiative “Read Across America,” that includes the tradition of adults reading to children in schools and libraries as close as possible to Dr. Seuss’ birthday.
“Participating in activities like this is one of the unexpected joys of the job,” Sheriff Gannon said.
Aptly, the sheriff, in uniform, chose to read aloud two children’s books with law enforcement themes: “The Police Cloud” by Christoph Niemann and “Officer Buckle and Gloria,” by Peggy Rathman.
Officer Buckle couldn’t get schoolchildren to pay attention to his safety tips – keep shoelaces tied, never leave a thumbtack on a chair – until he partnered with K-9 Gloria, who couldn’t communicate the tips without Officer Buckle by her side. Schoolchildren gave them cheers, they were on the 10 o’clock news, and they learned their success was due to their teamwork.
The Cloud’s physical characteristics prevented it from succeeding at police work until one day, ready to give up, the Cloud’s tears extinguished a house fire.
“I may be taking this one out myself,” Sheriff Gannon said of “The Police Cloud.”
Freeholder Darling read “The Peace Book” by Todd Parr and a second book about the friendship between a dog and litter of kittens. Bonanni read “Even Firefighters Hug Their Moms” by Christine Kole MacLean. Burd selected a Dr. Seuss story – “In a People House.”