Amy Thue has been selected as the 2019 recipient of the True Friend of Education Award. The Milbank Education Association (MEA) recognized Amy and Whimsy on Main – the business she co-owns with her sister Sara- for promoting a love of reading. They also noted Amy’s service as a volunteer track coach since 2014 and as a member of the school board.
When Amy received the award during the school board meeting Monday, November 11, she said “I cannot take all the credit for this. Sara has been just as much a part of Whimsy and giving to the school.” Whimsy on Main has donated over 200 books to the school and sponsored a reading contest for middle and high school students. The prizes were the books the students voted as their favorites.
The sisters also participate in Children’s Book Week by giving books to every grade. In addition, last year they provide the book Ghost by Jason Reynolds for every Milbank sixth grade student.
Amy says the love of reading was instilled in them at an early age. Reading was important to their mom, Cheryl Conrad, who was a teacher at Koch Elementary School. The Conrad girls and their brother spent a lot of time at the Grant County Library. Apparently, their mother knew what she was doing when she made the library a boundary for them. It was as far as they could go on their bikes.
Amy says her dad was also a reader, so they were surrounded by reading. She says, “What a change it makes when parents understand the importance of reading to their kids. Reading to your child doesn’t take a lot of effort. Even a few minutes every day can make difference.”
Sara and Amy spend a lot of time researching books and reviewing new releases. They are always on the hunt for books kids will enjoy. All this takes time, of course, and combined with busy schedules it means they aren’t able to read for their own pleasure as much as they would like. But, they say they are fortunate to have customers who are avid readers and willing to share their discoveries. They both also somehow find time to read a little each day.
A True Friend of Education recipient is selected each year by the MEA in conjunction with American Education Week, which takes place this November 18-22.