On Saturday, September 24, Gina Bitner and I--as we have done for the past two years--drove two vans filled with students to the Plum Creek Literacy Festival, where, among other internationally recognized illustrators, they got to meet Aaron Reynolds.
There, as the photographs suggest, the students enjoyed meeting authors and illustrators, and getting their autographs. Thanks to a Student Enrichment grant, the students got to attend the festival and the banquet; they also got a couple children's books of their choice for their favorite folks to sign.
I took special pleasure from talking briefly with Louis Sachar, author of the National Book Award- and Newbery Prize-winning novel Holes.
In addition, I bumped into a former student of the Mari Sandoz Young Writers' Workshop from quite a few years ago. Melissa Pohl now teaches high school English.
This year's guests included many of the top folks in the field of Children's Literature. I listened to presentations by a number of people including Peter Brown, Brian Floca, Aaron Reynolds, Louis Sachar, and singer-songwriter Emily Arrow.
To give you an idea of the fun our students experienced, give the following short videos a watch.
Emily Arrow Sings:
Louis Sacher talks about how his journey to become a writer:
And Aaron Reynolds is both crazy and brilliant: