Children's Festival of Reading Set for May 19

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
[email protected]
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Children's Festival of Reading Set for May 19

Posted: 04/26/2012
The 2012 Children's Festival of Reading will have audiences starry-eyed! Dream Big is the theme of the summer, and it is particularly fitting as the lineup of featured guests is a virtual constellation of star power. From Biscuit and Babymouse to the Backyardigans and Ella Enchanted, this year's Festival plays host to some of the most highly acclaimed legends in children's literature.

Joining us on Saturday, May 19 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in World's Fair Park at the 8th annual kick off celebration for the Knox County Public Library's Summer Reading Programs are authors and illustrators who dreamed big and made it: Alyssa Capucilli, Jennifer and Matthew Holm, Gail Carson Levine, Dan Yaccarino, David Ezra Stein, Dianne de Las Casas and many more.

The Children's Festival of Reading celebrates the literary arts with six performance stages, a Parade of Books, arts and crafts, book sales, 50 community booths,food, music, storytelling, and tons of fun. Readers of all ages are encouraged to sign up for a summer of reading in one of the Library's summer reading clubs.

"This Festival does an outstanding job of encouraging families in the adventure of reading," commented Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett. "There's something for everyone. It's the best blend of fun and education."

This year, in salute to the International Biscuit Festival which also falls on May 19, the Library hosts Alyssa Capucilli, author of the popular Biscuit series. Biscuit is a fanciful yellow puppy who seeks adventure of all sorts and stars in the Harper Collins "My First I Can Read" series for emerging readers.


Partnering with the L&N Stem Academy Students, the Science Village hosts "Mr. Bond, The Science Guy" as he demonstrates jaw-dropping, mind-bending, awe-inspiring experiments in front of your very eyes! Robots Alive! will feature L&N Stem Academy students as they explain robotic adventures. The UN-science Fair is where L&N Stem Academy students will show off their passion, enthusiasm, and know-how in experiments of their own.


Jennifer Holm and Matthew Holm make up the brother-sister team who created Babymouse - star of the popular, award-winning, hilarious, pink graphic novel series showcasing the trials and tribulations of elementary school. Jennifer Holm is also a three time Newbery honoree for Our Only May Amelia, Penny from Heaven, and most recently Turtle in Paradise.

Alyssa Capucilli is the award-winning author of over 75 books including Biscuit, the popular best seller used to launch the My First I Can Read series from Harper Collins. With over seventeen million books in print worldwide, Biscuit has been deemed a modern children's classic. Ms. Capucilli is the recipient of numerous awards including the Washington Irving Award, the Garden State Award, the Oppenheim Portfolio Gold Award, and the American Library Association Award.

Gail Carson Levine has written eighteen books for children. Ella Enchanted earned a Newbery Honor award in 1998 and was made into a feature film in 2004. While many of Levine's books feature fantastical stories of remarkable heroines, she has also written several critically acclaimed historical fiction chapter books, non-fiction books for children, and picture books. Her most recent publication is a picture book entitled Betsey Red Hoodie, a sequel to Betsey Who Cried Wolf.

David Ezra Stein's picture book, Interrupting Chicken, earned a 2011 Caldecott Honor. Stein's Leaves won the Ezra Jack Keats award and was Publisher Weekly's Best Book of the Year, a Kirkus Review Editor's Choice, and a School Library Journal Best Book. Booklist called his book Monster Hug! "a cousin to Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are." His books have been published in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and France. David lives in New Gardens, NY with his wife and son.

Dan Yaccarino is not only known for his well-loved children's books, but also for the Parent's Choice Award-winning animated TV series Oswald, for the Emmy Award-winning show Willa's Wild Life, and for the Backyardigans character designs. Hailed as an "American original" by Animation Magazine, Yaccarino's work has been featured in New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Rome. In addition to writing and illustrating his own picture books, Yaccarino's bold, stylized, and witty illustrations add energy to the words of prestigious authors such as Margaret Wise Brown, Jack Prelutsky, Kevin Henkes, and Patricia MacLachlan.

The Children's Festival of Reading is made possible by the generous support of the National Endowment of the Arts, Friends of the Library, ORNL Federal Credit Union, Pilot Flying J, Humanities Tennessee, Tennessee Arts Commission, ORNL, Barnes & Noble Booksellers, the Knoxville News Sentinel, Comcast, B97.5 and WVLT.


Since 1886, the people of Knox County have been fortunate to have an impressive collection of library resources. Today, the Knox County Public Library is prouder than ever to offer more than one million books, periodicals, CDs, films, and audiobooks. From innovative programming and reference services to the latest technology, Library staff is working hard to make your library experience more convenient and relevant than ever. With over 19 facilities across the county, it's a good time to be a library card holder.

Learn more about the Children's Festival of Reading at or by calling 865-215-8767.