Family Friendly Fun at Easthampton BookFest
Community-Based Literacy Opportunities!
Residents of western Massachusetts suffer no shortage of independent bookstores, and there are wonderful authors and illustrators residing throughout. Easthampton City Arts+ – along with a great many local business, artists, and authors – celebrates the region’s rich literary culture with the first annual Easthampton BookFest! Held on Saturday, April 11, 2015, at locations all over Easthampton, the event highlights local authors and illustrators, as well as storytellers, bookbinders, translators, zine artists, and book-centric locations throughout the city.
Made up of many different independent workshops, presentations, hands-on activities, celebrations, performances, and other happenings, Easthampton BookFest will take place from 10am-10pm, filling the city with all things literary all day long. While some facets of the event are best for adults, there are many opportunities for families to engage in community-based learning. The Western Massachuestts Illustrators’ Guild will offer workshops on creating images inspired by words, Knack will offer materials for hands-on bookmark making, and Eastworks will host children’s author Patricia MacLachlan reading and discussing her most recent book, White Fur Flying.
Additionally, older learners can explore the more nontraditional realms of the literary world by visiting the 2015 Pioneer Valley Zine Fest, hearing about the craft of literary translation from the Pioneer Valley Translators’ Group, listening to or participating in a story slam (themed “second hand”), or watching a series of 10-minute plays written by local playwrights. Each of these events presents opportunities for thinking and learning not only about the community’s connection to the literary world, but the importance of story within nontraditional literary art forms. Of course, the most familiar form of stories are books, but stories are something that can be shared through may avenues – many of which can be explored during BookFest.
Check the full schedule of events and locations before attending BookFest – events are located all over town, and attendance may require some planning. All events are free and open to all ages, but families should keep in mind that some events may include themes best for older students.