Celebrating the Winners of the “Our COmmunity” Coloring Contest

15th Annual (and 1st Virtual)

Read to Me Tea

Congratulations, winners!

We’ve reached out to your caregiver to make sure you get your winner packet. If you haven’t heard from us, please click the button below. If you have questions, reach out to our Director of Program, Jan Wilks. Her email is jwilks@therapycenter.org, or you can call (616) 559-1054.


About the Coloring Contest and Read to Me Tea

Did you know that March is Social Worker Month, April is Occupational Therapy Month, and May is Better Hearing and Speech Month? 

To celebrate, CTC (which provides special education services to West Michigan schools) hosts a coloring contest that starts in March and ends with an event in May. Children submit beautiful artworks, and from among them, we select our winners. 

In a normal year, we would celebrate by having a Read to Me Tea at the Sweet House in downtown Grand Rapids. Complete with cookies, lemonade, and prizes. Along with a stack of books, each winner receives a pack of notecards made from their art. Local, state, and federal law makers come read to the winners, then spend time speaking with families about special education policy and other issues. 

This year, we’ve had to take a different tack! All winners and their art are posted here. Legislators recorded videos of themselves congratulating winners and reading books and sent them to us to share here. Because face-to-face communication isn’t possible, they’ve provided their contact info; you’re welcome to reach out to them with questions and comments. And winner packets (containing books, notecards made from the winning art, and other goodies) will be distributed at our office and/or through schools.

Thank you to community members and legislators for helping make this event possible. It is 100% supported by donations, and we’d love to have your support for next year’s event.

US Senator Debbie Stabenow

Giraffes Can't Dance

Written by Giles Andreae
Read by Debbie Stabenow

Gerald the giraffe wants nothing more than to dance. With crooked knees and thin legs, it’s harder for a giraffe than you would think. Gerald is finally able to dance to his own tune when he gets some encouraging words from an unlikely friend.

Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalyn Bliss

Goodnight Moon

Written by Margaret Wise Brown
Read by Rosalynn Bliss

In a great green room, tucked away in bed, is a little bunny. To all the familiar things in the room—to the picture of the three little bears sitting on chairs, to the clocks and his socks, to the mittens and the kittens, to everything one by one—the little bunny says goodnight.

Winner Gallery: 

Abney Academy

Winner Gallery: 

Byron Center Charter

Michigan Senator Winnie Brinks

The Colors of Us

Written by Karen Katz
Read by Winnie Brinks

Seven-year-old Lena is going to paint a picture of herself. She wants to use brown paint for her skin. But when she and her mother take a walk through the neighborhood, Lena learns that brown comes in many different shades.

Michigan Representative Bradley Slagh

Emmanuel's Dream

Written by Laurie Ann Thompson
Read by Bradley Slagh

This is the true story of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah, who bicycled across Ghana–nearly 400 miles–with only one leg. He forever changed how his country treats people with disabilities, and he shows us all that one person is enough to change the world.

Winner Gallery: 

Comprehensive Therapy Center

Winner Gallery:

Flat River Academy

Thank You to Our Sponsor

Warner Norcross + Judd


Written by Ludwig Bemelmans
Read by Rodney Martin, Partner at WN+J

Madeline is the smallest girl, and the most daring and brave. But one night she wakes up in pain and Madame Clavel, the mistress of the house, rushes her to the hospital. Watch the video to find out what happens!

Thank you to Warner Norcross + Judd for being this year’s Read to Me Tea sponsor.

Support the Read to Me Tea

This program is 100% donor-funded. Thank you for your support!

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Donation Total: $25.00 One Time

Winner Gallery: 

Hope Academy

Winner Gallery: 


Michigan Representative Lynn Afendoulis

Grace Goes to Washington

Written by Kelly DiPucchio
Read by Lynn Afendoulis

Grace feels closer than ever to her dream of becoming president someday, but she realizes on a class trip that she still has a lot to learn about what it means to serve the needs of the people, especially when people want such different things!

Grand Rapids Commissioner Milinda Ysasi

Giraffes Can't Dance

Written by Giles Andreae
Read by Milinda Ysasi

Gerald the giraffe wants nothing more than to dance. With crooked knees and thin legs, it’s harder for a giraffe than you would think. Gerald is finally able to dance to his own tune when he gets some encouraging words from an unlikely friend.

Winner Gallery: 

Marquette Elementary

Winner Gallery: 

Walden Green

Thank you for joining us!

We hope that you enjoyed this year’s Virtual Read to Me Tea. 

If you’re a winner and haven’t gotten a letter yet notifying you of how to get your packet, please email Director of Programs Jan Wilks. She will make sure you have your prize, which includes notecards with your art on them, books, yummy treats, and more. Congratulations again, and we hope to see your art again next year.