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

Gaithersburg Book Festival Brings Literature to Life in the Children’s Village

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8th Annual Festival Features Award-winning Authors, Workshops,
Multilingual Story Time and Activities for Children of All Age

Gaithersburg, Md. – March 15, 2017 – On Saturday, May 20, 2017, the Gaithersburg Book Festival will bring literature to life for children of all ages through story time in multiple languages, performances, writing workshops and a multitude of activities in the Festival’s Children’s Village, sponsored by Activity Rocket and Washington Parent. The Children’s Village also will be the hub where more than 40 of today’s best and brightest children’s and young adult authors will be featured in interactive presentations, readings and book signings.

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

Children’s Authors

  • Brian Biggs – Author/illustrator, whose latest book is “Noisy Night.”
  • Phil Bildner – Author of numerous children’s picture books, including the Margaret Wise Brown Prize-winning “Marvelous Cornelius;” introducing his new middle-grade novel, “Rookie of the Year.”
  • Fred Bowen Washington Post sports columnist and author of 22 action-packed books, including his newest “Outside Shot.”
  • Molly Brooks – Illustrator of “Flying Machines: How the Wright Brothers Soared.”
  • Ruth Chan – Author and illustrator of “Georgie’s Best Bad Day.”
  • Doreen Cronin – Author of “Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type” and “The Chicken Squad” series, including her latest, “Dark Shadows: Yes, Another Misadventure.”
  • Brian Floca – Author-illustrator of the Caldecott-winning “Locomotive” and “Moonshot: The Flight of Apollo 11,” he’ll be featuring his newest book “Princess Cora and the Crocodile.”
  • Alexis Frederick-Frost – Co-author and illustrator of the critically acclaimed “Adventures in Cartooning” series, he’ll be sharing his latest, “Hocus Focus.”
  • Maria Gianferrari – Author of “Coyote Moon,” “Penny & Jelly” books, “Officer Katz & Houndini” and the forthcoming “Hello Goodbye Dog.”
  • Michael Hearst – Composer, multi-instrumentalist and writer whose most recent project includes the series: “Unusual Creatures,” “Extraordinary People” and “Curious Constructions.”
  • Gareth Hinds – Creator of critically-acclaimed graphic novels based on literary classics, including “Beowulf,” “King Lear,” “The Merchant of Venice” and “Samurai Rising.”
  • Kimberly Willis Holt – Author of many award-winning novels for young adults and children, including “Dear Hank Williams,” “When Zachary Beaver Came to Town” and her latest, “Blooming at the Texas Sunrise Motel.”
  • Erin Entrada Kelly – Award-winning author of “Blackbird Fly” and “Land of Forgotten Girls.” Her newest book is “Hello, Universe.”
  • Falynn Koch – Author/illustrator for two books in the First Second science comic book series, “Bats: Learning to Fly” and “Plagues: Biological Battlefield.”
  • Debbie Levy – Author of the Sydney Taylor Award-winning “I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark,” “We Shall Overcome: The Story of a Song” and “Dozer’s Run: A True Story of a Dog and His Race.”
  • Tom Lichtenheld – Author of popular “Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site” and its long-awaited New York Times best-selling sequel, “Mighty, Mighty, Construction Site.”
  • Lisa Martin – Author of the “Anton and Cecil” series, co-written with her aunt, Valerie Martin.
  • Juana Medina – Illustrator of “Smick!” by Doreen Cronin and author/illustrator of “One Big Salad” and the new, Pura Belpré award-winning “Juana & Lucas.”
  • Kate Messner – Author of the picture book “Over and Under the Pond” and “Over and Under the Snow,” illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal.
  • Christopher Silas Neal – Award-winning author and illustrator of picture books, including “Over and Under the Pond” with Kate Messner.
  • Jerdine Nolen – Award-winning author of “Big Jabe,” “Thunder Rose,” “Hewitt Anderson’s Great Big Life” and “Eliza’s Freedom Road.”
  • Herman Parish – Herman Parish is carrying on his aunt Peggy Parish’s “Amelia Bedelia” tradition for a new generation of readers, adding 16 books about the grown-up Amelia and five picture books of her as a young girl.
  • Dave Roman – Editor and creator of the Science Comics series that will feature 25 graphic novels; and 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.”
  • Leila Sales – Author of the middle grade time-travel novel “Once Was a Time,” as well as four YA novels.
  • Ted Sanders – Author of “The Keepers,” a middle-grade series, and a short story collection, “No Animals We Could Name.”
  • Susan Stockdale – Author/illustrator of eight picture books, including “Fantastic Flowers,” “Stripes of All Types,” “Fabulous Fishes” and “Bring On the Birds.”
  • Sheila Turnage – Award-winning author of “Three Times Lucky,” “The Ghosts of Tupelo Landing” and “The Odds of Getting Even.”
  • Chris Van Dusen – Creator of “The Circus Ship,” “Randy Riley’s Really Big Hit” and “Hattie & Hudson,” as well as illustrator of “President Taft Is Stuck in the Bath” and the best-selling “Mercy Watson” series.
  • Alison Wilgus – Writer for comics and prose, whose “Flying Machines: How The Wright Brothers Soared ” is her latest book.
  • Ru Xu – Creator of the popular webcomic “Saint for Rent.” “NewsPrints” is her first graphic novel.
  • Salina Yoon – Author/illustrator of nearly 200 books for children, including “Be A Friend,” “Penguin and Pinecone,” “Penguin on Vacation” and “My Kite is Stuck! And Other Stories.”

Teen/Young Adult Authors

  • Amalie Howard – Author of novels such as “Waterfell,” “The Almost Girl,” “Alpha Goddess” and “The Fallen Prince.”
  • Brigid Kemmerer – Author of the Elementals series; her most recent novel is “Letters to the Lost.”
  • Christine Kendall – “Riding Chance” is her first novel.
  • Michelle Knudsen – Best-selling author of 45 books for young readers, her new book is the YA sequel “Revenge of the Evil Librarian.”
  • Kimberly McCreight – Best-selling author of “The Outliers,” “Reconstructing Amelia” and her most recent book, “The Scattering.”
  • Meg Medina – Pura Belpré winner for YA novel “Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass” and picture book “Mango, Abuela and Me;” her latest novel is “Burn Baby Burn.”
  • Caroline Tung Richmond – Author of the YA novels “The Darkest Hour” and “The Only Thing to Fear.”
  • Lindsay Smith – Author of Cold War-era espionage novels “Sekret” and “Skandal,” her latest title is “A Darkly Beating Heart.”
  • Whitney Taylor – Author of “Definitions of Indefinable Things.”
  • Erin Teagan – Author of debut middle grade novel, “The Friendship Experiment.”
  • Booki Vivat – “Frazzled: Everyday Disasters and Impending Doom” is her first novel.
  • Carol Weston – An advice columnist at Girls’ Life since 1994, her latest novel is “Speed of Life.”

Imagination Station

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

  • 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 elementary schools will discuss Kimberly Willis Holt’s novel, “Blooming at the Texas Sunrise Motel,” with a celebrity reader and the author.
  • Penny Theater: Sponsored by the Quince Orchard Chapter of the Friends of the Library, Penny Theater will perform “Curious George” and “Little Red Hen.”
  • Silly Goose and Val Smalkin: Ventriloquist Val Smalkin presents a fast-paced, humorous 40-minute musical treat with puppets, dancing, singing and audience participation.
  • 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 on stage and will present a 30-Minute Shakespeare Book Series at his booth.
  • Metropolitan Ballet Theatre & Academy: An original contemporary ballet program choreographed by Elizabeth Odell Catlett and Katerina Rodgaard is based on the poetry of Shel Silverstein.
  • Shannon Phelan: Once Upon A Pose, an imaginative adventure where children participate by acting out the story through yoga.
  • Twinbrook Tellers of the Dogwood 4H Club: Young storytellers do old-fashioned storytelling, with no books or props in hand.

Multilingual Story Time Tent

The Story Time Tent is a place where children and families can enjoy listening to stories in a variety of languages read by students from The Universities at Shady Grove.

Story House Trolley

Climb aboard the Story House Trolley to explore books about trolleys, trains, cars, buses and more. The unique space will feature wooden trains and tracks, crafts and costumes for creative selfies. Older kids should bring their knowledge of all things Hogwarts for a scavenger hunt throughout the Festival. Meet other wizards and uncover hidden clues in this literary game of magic.

Writing Workshops

The Children’s Village will offer free writing workshops for children and teens, led by experts from local writing programs. Workshops will focus on activities such as how to write winning short stories, fiction, “how to’s” and college essays; developing unique characters for comics; making a sketchbook; and journal writing for young sports fans.

Where’s Waldo? Scavenger Hunt

This popular activity returns, with Waldo hiding throughout the Festival. Pick up your scavenger hunt entry form at the Where’s Waldo Booth for a Children’s Village-wide Where’s Waldo hunt, sponsored by Candlewick Press. Children who find all of the Waldo cutouts around the festival grounds can enter a raffle to win a Waldo deluxe prize pack.

More Non-Stop Activities

  • Rocket Row: Here you will find fun and interactive activity booths, thanks to one of our top sponsors, Activity Rocket!
  • City of Gaithersburg Educational Enrichment Committee: Enter for a chance to win a basket of books for your Gaithersburg elementary or middle school’s library! Participate in engaging activities, and discover all that the City of Gaithersburg has to offer to area families.
  • Scholastic, Inc.: Take a picture with Clifford the Big Red Dog, color, listen to a story or participate in Chalk Talks.
  • Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital: Identify your special reading place by making a creative bookmark.
  • Montgomery College Early Childhood Club: Join them in the Cat In The Hat and Friends Tent to learn more about the importance of reading to your child, enjoy story time, get your picture taken with the Cat In The Hat, do crafts or play a game.
  • Modern Eyes, LLC: Free vision screenings for kids and adults.
  • Pets On Wheels: Bring your favorite book and read to dogs.
  • Martin’s School: Make a literary craft, take a selfie.
  • The Little Gym: Book and music activities from their Wonderkids Club and Kindermusick programs.
  • National Federation for the Blind: Learn how to read with Braille.

The Festival takes place Saturday, May 20, 2017, 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. Quickly becoming one of the premier literary events in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, the 2017 Festival is scheduled for Saturday, May 20, on the grounds of Gaithersburg City Hall, in Olde Towne Gaithersburg, Md. Activities will 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 will be available from Shady Grove Metro and Lakeforest Mall. The Gaithersburg Book Festival also hosts 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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