…and Experience the Magic of Books and Connection at The Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival on October 15
Take a “Walk in the Words” and experience the magic of books and connection at The Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival on October 15, 2022.
Inspired by the beautiful and diverse stories told by the 150+ authors, the Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival (CCBF) celebrates literacy, the power of words, and the unifying quality of books. Festival organizers thank Hudson Talbott, author of American Library Association (ALA) honor book, A Walk in the Words, for creating this year’s incredible poster art, and for showing readers that words are stepping stones and that they should always take their time to “savor the story!” (Talbott).
The 9th annual Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival will take place on October 15, 2022 at the Chappaqua Station from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Many fan favorites are returning, along with beloved traditions, including author signings, sponsor activities, story time, and musical performances, and there will be lots of exciting new additions. While the festival made a much-anticipated return in 2021, albeit on a small scale, organizers anticipate this year to be a perfect fall day for readers and families to meet their favorite authors and enjoy all the town has to offer.
“It’s a thrill to be heading into our ninth annual festival,” Dawn Greenberg, Executive Director of CCBF, said. “We are so happy that it’s bigger than ever with some very exciting new authors plus our many favorites from years past. We are expanding our family fun zone and our food truck area, too. We really want families to come and spend the day…and then to take some time to explore our beautiful town! Fall is the best time in Chappaqua. Combine that with smiling kids meeting their favorite authors–it’s a day like no other.”
Historically the festival has been a county-wide favorite, and has drawn authors, illustrators, and visitors from many neighboring states. Among those are local authors and illustrators including Nick Bruel (Bad Kitty), Barbara Dee (Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet), Sujean Rim (Zoogie Boogie Fever), and Matt (Pet) & Mara Van Fleet (Three Little Mermaids). Recent award winners Veera Hiranandani (How To Find What You’re Not Looking For) and Kyle Lukoff (Too Bright To See) will return as part of the day’s lineup; and celebrated authors, Phil Bildner (A High Five For Glenn Burke), Mike Curato (Where is Bina Beat?), Alyson Gerber (Taking Up Space), Chris Grabenstein (Mr. Lemoncello’s Very First Game), Dan Gutman (My Weirdest School), James Howe (Bunnicula), Victoria Kann (Pinkalicious), Alan Katz (Awesome Achievers in Technology), Torrey Maldonado (What Lane?), Janae Marks (A Soft Place to Land), Kate Messner (Over and Under the Waves), Laurie Morrison (Coming Up Short), Co-authors Gae Polisner & Nora Raliegh Baskin (Consider the Octopus), Lauren Tarshis (I Survived), and Mark Teague (King King’s Cousin) will ALL be in attendance again, just to name a few!
Some of the highly anticipated new additions include Selina Alko (I is for Immigrants), Melanie Conklin (A Perfect Mistake), Carrie Firestone (The First Rule of Climate Club), Josh Funk (My Pet Feet), Valerie Goldstein (Violet’s Victory), Rajani LaRocca (Red, White, and Whole), Claribel Ortega (Witchlings), Eric Rosswood (Strong), Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich (Operation Sisterhood), Elly Swartz (Dear Student), and Jennifer Thermes (Manhattan: Mapping the Story on an Island).
Also new to the festival (and traveling great distances to meet readers) are rockstar husband & wife team, Chris Barton (How to Make a Book (About My Dog)) and Jennifer Ziegler (Worser), Lisa Fipps (Starfish), Christina Diaz Gonzalez (Invisible), and Sally J Pla (Benji, The Bad Day, And Me).
Emily Barth Isler (Aftermath), who will be flying in from California shared that, “The opportunity to connect with other authors in person is always exciting, but meeting readers and getting to connect with the people we truly write the books for is the best part.”
The full roster of authors, illustrators, and sponsors can be found on the CCBF site. Be sure to check it out so you can plan your day!
The power of books and connection
The CCBF board actively seeks to ensure that all readers find books that both highlight their identities and help them to develop empathy towards others. This mission is grounded in the work of Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop who is widely respected for her commentary on the importance of diverse books which reflect the world in which we live. In her 1990 essay, she wrote:
“Books are sometimes windows, offering views of worlds that may be real or imagined, familiar or strange. These windows are also sliding glass doors, and readers have only to walk through in imagination to become part of whatever world has been created or recreated by the author. When lighting conditions are just right, however, a window can also be a mirror. Literature transforms the human experience and reflects it back to us, and in that reflection we can see our own lives and experiences as part of a larger human experience.” (Bishop, 1990).
A little over 30 years later, as many diverse children’s books have become the targets of criticism, CCBF is proud to promote literacy and openly stands against censorship and book banning. The board and all volunteers hope the event serves as a beacon of hope and a reminder of the power of words and the many ways books unite us.
Jyoti Gopal (American Desi), who volunteered at the Chappaqua Book Festival in the past, is “excited to participate as a debut author this year!” She says, “Books were a lifeline for me growing up but I rarely found books that represented me. I love the range of stories and genres that are available at the Festival and am thankful that I will be one of the many voices represented there–it’s vitally important for children to be able to see themselves and their experiences in books, to see that their identity is affirmed and valued. And it’s a super fun day!”
Festival organizers will follow up-to-date guidelines and protocols regarding social distances, crowd numbers and masking policies. They will ensure that the festival is a safe space for all and encourages everyone to do what makes them feel most comfortable and excited to attend and enjoy the day.
9th Annual Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival
Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Chappaqua Train Station