Community Orgs Events

Raise a Glass for This Fundraiser to Help Literacy Chippewa Valley

‘A Toast to Literacy’ Planned for May 16 in Altoona

Barbara Arnold |

Author and UW-Eau Claire Professor B.J. Hollars. (Volume One file photo)
Author and UW-Eau Claire Professor B.J. Hollars. (Volume One file photo)

Literacy Chippewa Valley supporters  – raise your glasses (clink-clink!) — and attend “A Toast to Literacy” on Tuesday, May 16, from 5:30-7:30pm at the River Prairie Center, 1445 Front Porch Place, Altoona, where award-winning author, beloved professor, and dad/husband about town B.J. Hollars will be sharing his thoughts on “A Literary Life.”

Tickets, $47 in advance and $52 at the door, include one drink ticket for a Literary Cocktail or Mocktail as well as appetizers whimsically named Literary Bites. While the event is a fundraiser, its purpose is to raise awareness about Literacy Chippewa Valley and provide a venue for professionals to mix and mingle.

In an interview prior to the event, Hollars shared about a professor of his who wrote for The New York Times. One day in class he offhandedly mentioned that some of his major news stories had started wars and stopped wars; they’d put guilty people in prison and set innocent people free. “He wasn’t exaggerating,” Hollars said. “Words have power. And when we can read and write them, we can better advocate for ideas that matter to us. And people who matter to us, too. Literacy is the lantern on the darkened path – it can guide us where we most need to go.”

LCV currently has six staff and 30 volunteers who serve about 400 students in the Chippewa Valley, including several English Language Learners, children, many refuges – asylum seekers or in poverty – who are single adults or families with children from 24 countries including Afghanistan, Laos, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Tunisia, Ukraine, and Venezuela. LCV also serves nearly 200 student inmates at the jails in Chippewa, Eau Claire, and Dunn counties.

Its mission is to empower adults and their families to reach their educational, employment, and life goals through free, learner-focused literacy programs. For more info, please visit