Book Festival
May 19, 2018 10am - 6pm
City Hall
Book Festival
May 20, 2017 10am - 6pm
City Hall

The 2016 GBF Children’s Village: About 100 reasons to bring the kids on 5/21!

Posted By: Jud Ashman

March 20, 2016

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On Saturday, May 21, 2016, the Gaithersburg Book Festival will offer programming for children of all ages designed to inspire creativity and a life-long love of literature in the Festival’s Children’s Village, sponsored by Washington Parent. Made up of events and activities almost entirely donated by local organizations, the Children’s Village will feature some of today’s top authors in children’s and young adult literature, hands-on activities, performances and interactive workshops.

Among the award-winning and best-selling authors and illustrators coming to the Gaithersburg Book Festival this year are:

Children’s Authors

  • Cece Bell: Author-illustrator of “Rabbit and Robot: The Sleepover” and creator of “El Deafo” and “The Sock Monkey” picture books
  • Megan Frazer Blakemore: Author of “The Friendship Riddle,” “The Spy Catchers of Maple Hill” and “The Water Castle”
  • Fred Bowen: Washington Post KidsPost columnist and author of 21 action-packed chapter books for kids, including his most recent, “Out of Bounds.”
  • Monica Brown: Author of “Lola Levine is Not Mean!” “Lola Levine, Drama Queen” and “Maya’s Blanket/la manta de Maya”
  • Gennifer Choldenko: Featuring her newest novel, “Chasing Secrets,” Choldenko is also the author of the popular Tales from Alcatraz series, including “Al Capone Does My Shirts”
  • Alexis Frederick-Frost: Co-author and illustrator of the critically acclaimed Adventures in Cartooning series of graphic novels and picture books
  • John Patrick Green: Author and illustrator of “Hippopotamister” and co-creator of the series Jax Epoch, and the comics “Quicken Forbidden” and “Teen Boat!”
  • Dianna Hutts Aston: Author of “An Egg Is Quiet,” “A Seed Is Sleepy,” “A Butterfly Is Patient,” “A Rock Is Lively” and the new “A Beetle Is Shy”
  • Katy Kelly: Author of “Lucy Rose” and “Melonhead”
  • Steve Light: Author-illustrator of “The Christmas Giant,” “Zephyr Takes Flight,” “Have You Seen My Dragon?,” “Have You Seen My Monster?” and “Swap!”
  • Lisa Martin: Author of “Anton and Cecil: Cats at Sea” and “Anton and Cecil: Cats on Track,” co-written with her aunt, the novelist Valerie Martin
  • John Parra: Illustrator, designer, teacher and fine art painter whose latest book is “Waiting for the Biblioburro”
  • Aaron Reynolds: Author of “President Squid,” “Nerdy Birdy,” “Here Comes Destructosaurus!,” “Carnivores” and “Creepy Carrots!”
  • Dave Roman: Author/illustrator of the Astronaut Academy series and writer of the graphic novels “Teen Boat! Race for Boatlantis” and “Agnes Quill: An Anthology of Mystery”
  • Jennifer Sattler: Author and illustrator of several children’s books including “Sylvie,” “Uh Oh, Dodo!” and the popular series Chick ‘N’ Pug and Pig Kahuna
  • Ronald L. Smith: Author of “Hoodoo”
  • Shawn K. Stout: Author of the Not-So-Ordinary Girl series and the Penelope Crumb series
  • Maris Wicks: Author behind Human Body Theater, as well as the illustrator of “Primates,” whose latest comic is “Science Comics: Coral Reefs”

Teen/Young Adult Authors

  • Candace Fleming: Author of more than 30 books including non-fiction titles “The Lincolns: A Scrapbook Look At Abraham and Mary” and “The Great and Only Barnum: the Tremendous, Stupendous Life of Showman P.T. Barnum”
  • Monica Hesse: A features writer at The Washington Post, her newest book is “Girl in the Blue Coat”
  • David Lubar: Author whose novels include “Hidden Talents” and “Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie,” and whose chapter book, “My Rotten Life,” is under option for TV and film development
  • Kristen-Paige Madonia: Author of two young adult novels, “Invisible Fault Lines” and “Fingerprints of You”
  • Phyllis Reynolds Naylor: Author of 140 books for both children and adults, including “Shiloh” books and the “Alice” series. Her latest novel for young teens is “Going Where It’s Dark.”
  • Deborah Wiles: Author of picture books “One Wide Sky” and “Freedom Summer;” middle-grade novels: “Love, Ruby Lavender;” “Each Little Bird That Sings” and “The Aurora County All-Stars;” and two documentary novels: “Countdown,” book one of The Sixties Trilogy, and “Revolution”

Imagination Station

With storytelling, juggling, drama and dance performances, Imagination Station will bring literature alive:

  • Book Club for Kids with Kitty Felde: Watch a live, on-stage version of “Book Club for Kids,” a 20-minute podcast where students from local middle schools will discuss, “Al Capone Does My Shirts” with author Gennifer Choldenko and host Kitty Felde.
  • Penny Theater: Sponsored by the Quince Orchard Chapter of the Friends of the Library, Penny Theater will perform the “Gingerbread Boy” and “Sam Who Never Forgets.”
  • Arianna Ross & Story Tapestries: Eat your fill of stories in “The Giggling, Wiggling Book Worm.” Participants in this interactive program will dance, sing, wiggle and giggle as the book worm in you finds an exciting new story to read, write, draw, dance, make music and, of course, tell other stories.
  • Mayor’s Book Club Award: The Mayor and Junior Mayor of Gaithersburg will present awards to the third grade student and class that read the most books in a four-week competition, followed by entertainment by the Gaithersburg Elementary School Chorus.
  • Nicolo the Jester of Nicolo Whimsey: With his blend of poetry, music, juggling, comedy, character acting and audience participation, Nick Newlin performs as Nicolo the Jester of Nicolo Whimsey and present the a 30-Minute Shakespeare Book Series at his booth.
  • Twinbrook Tellers of the Dogwood Dogs 4-H Club: This group will tell “Tales of Magic and Adventure” for children of all ages.
  • Storyteller Noa Baum will shares stories from diverse cultures to highlight our similarities and celebrate our differences.
  • Buddy Bison’s Yellowstone Adventure: Join Dr. Ilona Holland as she tells the tale of “Buddy Bison’s Yellowstone Adventure” in partnership with the National Park Trust.
  • Fizzical Fairytales: Fizzical Fairytales performs “The Selfish Giant,” a story told with puppets.

Story Time Tent

The Story Time Tent is a place where children and families can enjoy listening to stories read in English by school media specialists, teachers, librarians, authors, pageant winners and Scholastic. Multilingual story time will be hosted by students from The Universities at Shady Grove, who will read stories in a variety of languages.

Writing Workshops

The Children’s Village will offer free writing workshops for children, led by experts from local writing programs. Workshops, designed for ages 8-14 will focus on activities such as creating picture books, comics and book dummies; developing memorable characters; and building a story with Legos. Also, kids can join graphic novelist Dave Roman for his popular Quickfire! Drawing Game Show.

Where’s Waldo? Scavenger Hunt

This popular activity returns, with Waldo hiding throughout the Festival. Pick up your scavenger hunt entry form and checklist at the Washington Parent Children’s Information Booth and let the race begin.

Children who find all of the Waldo cutouts around the festival grounds can enter a raffle to win a Waldo deluxe prize pack.

But Wait, There’s More Non-Stop Activities in the Children’s Village

  • Rocket Row: Here you will find a slew of activity booths, thanks to one of our top sponsors, Activity Rocket! Learn about traditional animation tools such as zoetropes and thanaumatropes with Kids Museum; Participate in games, stories and art projects taught in foreign languages with Language Stars; make a recipe book with Tiny Chefs; and enjoy reading and writing activities with Huntington Learning Center and The McLean School Summer Edge Program.
  • City of Gaithersburg Educational Enrichment Committee & Youth Centers: Enter for a chance to win a set of books for your Gaithersburg elementary or middle school’s library! Donate a book appropriate for middle or high schoolers for Gaithersburg’s Youth Centers and earn a raffle ticket for a great prize! Talk to the Educational Enrichment Committee and the Bank on Gaithersburg Financial Wellness Coalition to learn about programs the City offers to area families.
  • Young Audiences/Arts for Learning: Partnering with storyteller Noa Baum to bring internationally acclaimed stories to Imagination Station.
  • National Park Trust and National Park Service: Visit Buddy Bison’s booth to learn more about your local parks, get your “Buddy Bison’s Yellowstone Adventure” book signed or purchase a Buddy Bison for your backpack.
  • Montgomery History: Tap, Tap, Tap into History with the opportunity to experience what it was like to type on a 1913 Royal Standard No. 5, or a 1970’s Safari portable typewriter.
  • Scholastic, Inc.: Take a picture with Clifford the Big Red Dog, color, listen to a story, win a chance to have Clifford visit your school and so much more.
  • Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital: Identify your special reading place by making foam door hangers and special book marks.
  • B&O Railroad: Join Choo Choo and her good friends, Stationmaster Sue, Conductor Cap and Engineer Coal for story time and activities, including a felt board and wooden animal train.
  • Montgomery College Early Childhood Club: Engage in crafts and activities that bring Dr. Seuss and the world of the Cat in the Hat alive.
  • D B & C Home Restorations LLC: Free face painting, featuring a selection of storybook characters including Clifford the Big Red Dog, The Cat in the Hat and Winnie the Pooh.
  • Oreo the History Pony and author Leah Taylor: Join Oreo for a time traveling trip through the White House to learn about the presidents and their favorite horses. You can also dress in costumes and get your photo taken with Oreo.
  • Modern Eyes, LLC: Free vision screenings for kids.
  • Pets On Wheels: Bring your favorite book and read to dogs.
  • Let’s Play America: Pat Rumbaugh, The Play Lady, and author of “Let’s Play at the Playground,” will lead fun activities, and sell and sign her book.

The Festival takes place Saturday, May 21, 2016, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the grounds of City Hall, 31 S. Summit Ave., Gaithersburg, MD 20877. For a complete list of children’s and young adult authors, as well as up-to-date details about all the activities and workshops hosted in the Children’s Village, visit the GBF website.


About the Gaithersburg Book Festival

The Gaithersburg Book Festival is an annual all-day celebration of books, writers and literary excellence. Now in its seventh year, the Festival has become one of the premier literary events in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. The Festival is scheduled for Saturday, May 21, 2016, on the grounds of Gaithersburg City Hall, in Olde Towne Gaithersburg, Md. Activities include author appearances, discussions and book signings; writing workshops; a Children’s Village; onsite sales of new and used books; literary exhibitors and food, drink, ice cream and more. FREE admission and shuttle from Shady Grove Metro and Lakeforest Mall. The Gaithersburg Book Festival also hosts additional author events in Montgomery County throughout the year as a way to encourage continued appreciation for all things literary. For more information please visit or follow on Twitter @GburgBookFest.


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The Gaithersburg Book Festival is one of the nation's premier literary events, featuring talks and signings by some of the world's top authors, writing workshops, children's activities and performances, literary exhibitors, book sales, music, food, and fun for everyone!
Starts: 05/21/2016 10:00
Duration: 6 hours:
Gaithersburg City Hall, 31 S. Summit Avenue
Gaithersburg, MD
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