This one snuck up on me, as it usually happens in late September and most years has taken place on the National Mall. But no matter where or when the annual Library of Congress National Book Festival occurs, it’s an event worth clearing time for in your weekend schedule.
That time would be this Saturday, August 30, from 10am – 10pm. For the first year ever, the Festival will be held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. It will be run much like it has been for the last 13 years with various pavilions highlighting the works of over 100 authors, illustrators, and poets.
Book enthusiasts, young and old, come from all over for a day of reading-related activities. Pavilions categorized by genre — Children, Teens, Picture Books, Contemporary Life, Culinary Arts, Fiction & Mystery, History & Biography, Poetry & Prose, Science and Special Programs — host presentations, book signings, photo ops with writers (and costumed PBS characters), and more exciting experiences for guests.
The Pavilion of the States salutes the literary traditions of all 50 states plus the territories the Library of Congress Pavilion provides an inside look into the workings of the world’s largest library, and a Book Sales Pavilion gives guests an opportunity to purchase selected reads — and possibly have them signed by the authors. The Let’s Read America Pavilion offers lots of activities for children and families to enjoy, including story time, live entertainment, and arts & crafts. New this year is an International pavilion featuring artists from around the world as well as evening hours, when special programs will occur.
If your children love books, chances are an author of one of their favorite stories will be there (Andrea Beaty, author of the much loved Iggy Peck Architect and Rosie Revere Engineer is among the presenters!). And there’s bound to be a writer — or many — that parents will be excited about, too. Have a look for yourself and start planning your Festival experience!
The National Book Festival will be held at the Washington Convention Center on Saturday, August 30, from 10am to 10pm. Admission is free.