WORDS / CHELSIE MARTIN
Come rain or shine, the Carroll and Madison Public Library Foundation will sponsor its 10th Books in Bloom Literary Festival. This year, the free literary event will be from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday, May 17th. As previous years, Books in Bloom Literary Festival will be held at the 1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
“We want to celebrate the long history of books, and the role that literacy plays in developing the imagination,” explains Elderwind, who has served as co-chair for the Library Foundation since its initiation. At the time, there were no other ongoing literary festivals in the region, the foundation wanted to remind the citizens of Northwest Arkansas regardless of how they are delivered, books continue play a dynamic role within our lives.
The members of the foundation agreed that hosting such an event would provide local supporters an opportunity to meet successful authors, while highlighting the value of reading. According to Elderwind, the event was never seen as a fundraiser, but as a gift to current and future readers.
Lin Wellford, another member of the foundation and co-chair of the festival, explains the adventurous ride from the beginning. “We had no idea how to find successful authors who would be willing to be part of it. We made up a long list of ‘dream authors’ and just started sending out invitations. It helped that many find the Ozarks a lovely place to visit.”
The 10th Books in Bloom Literary festival will include many colorful authors dedicated inspiring imagination. The foundation delighted to be presenting Tess Gerritsen, a frequent author of the NY Times bestsellers list who has captivated many through her compelling medical thrillers. NPR’s Roy Blount, a favorite humorist on “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me,” quiz show will also speak. The event will also include versatile author William Bernhardt and the author of one most anticipated books for 2015, Amanda Eyre Ward. Popular children’s cook series Pete the Cat authors’ husband and wife duo James and Kimberly Dean. Ozark native Abby Burnett will speak on her book, Gone to the Grave, Burial Customs of the Ozarks 1850-1950. These and many others will available to sign books and speak to fans when not presenting their programs.
Plan to join in this celebration of writers and readers for an afternoon dedicated to the imagination of literacy. For complete details, go to www.BooksinBloom.org.