It was a serendipitous moment when local freelance writer Shelley Little walked into the doors of LeClaire’s Grasshoppers gift store.

“I was just going into the store to see if Kim Collier (the owner of Grasshoppers) would be interested in being featured in the local business column that I write for the Bettendorf News. At the time, I did not even realize that President Obama had recently been to the shop,” Little said.

From that moment on, Collier and Little became fast friends and business partners in the creation of the new children’s book, “Brady Meets the President.”

It all began on Aug. 16 when President Barack Obama unexpectedly stopped by Grasshoppers while visiting LeClaire.

Collier was pleasantly surprised by the president’s visit.

“It was a delight and honor to have a chance to meet the president and have him shop in our gift store. Even Brady, our golden retriever, was quite excited. Actually, he sort of stole the show, which is how this book came to be.”

Obama wasn’t the first visitor of the shop to be taken with the affectionate dog. Visitors regularly would stop by to pet the gentle dog and give him a treat.

Collier’s mother, Sam DenBesten, suggested that the experience of meeting the president would make a great children’s book, especially if it was written through the eyes of Brady.

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Sadly, Brady died just before Christmas, so he won’t be there to soak in his glory.

Book signing

“Brady Meets the President” is due to be released next week, and a book signing is scheduled for 1-3 p.m. Feb. 11 at Grasshoppers. 208 N. Cody Road, LeClaire. Books also will be for sale at Hy-Vee  in Bettendorf and on 53rd Street in Davenport; Teagarden Pet Salon & School, 2367 Cumberland Square; Almost Home Pet Boarding and Grooming, 1510 State St. Online sales can also be found at amazon.com, barnesand noble.com and booksamillion.com.

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