Library of Congress

National Book Festival

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Library of Congress Literacy Corner

Celebrate the joy and importance of reading with a visit to the Literacy Corner, presented by the Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program, from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Parents, children, caregivers and educators can write or videotape a message to their favorite author at the Letters about Literature table. Festivalgoers also can grab a cape and transform themselves into a literacy superhero at the Library Superhero-selfie booth. They can bring a friend for a game of Book Bean-Bag Toss and learn more about award-winning organizations that promote literacy worldwide.

Library of Congress Town Square

Festivalgoers can learn about the Library’s diverse collections and services through engaging talks and performances by curators and entertainers at the Library of Congress Town Square. Family-friendly presentations include trivia sessions, an interactive maze illustration by Joe Wos, a special session with illustrator Roz Chast and appearances by the recently announced 2017 National Student Poets, five outstanding youth poets from across the nation for their original work. Library curators will showcase their collections with children’s and teens’ activities throughout the day. See the complete schedule

Library of Congress: Kids & Teachers Read & Learn

The Library’s Educational Outreach team makes learning fun for kids, families and teachers with activities featuring books, primary sources and giveaways at the Kids & Teachers – Read & Learn booth. Visitors can solve puzzles, share their favorite book titles and demonstrate their artistic and writing abilities. Inspired by the 30th anniversary of “Where’s Waldo?,” the Library is hosting a hide-and-seek game, featuring historic images from the Library’s collections, and partnering with Candlewick Press for a fun hunt for three Waldos hidden on the Expo Floor. Look for this elusive traveler, enter to win a prize and share your photo with Waldo @LibraryCongress #NatBookFest #ifoundwaldo.

Pavilion of the States

Attendees can interact with representatives from their home states and learn about each state’s literary heritage from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. in the Pavilion of the States. The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), with additional funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), makes it possible for an affiliate of the Library’s Center for the Book in each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. territories to participate in the festival. The “Discover Great Places Through Reading” brochure offers a list of 52 great reads and a map for kids that encourages them to visit all 52 affiliates to get a unique sticker or stamp. Many of these books will be for sale in the festival bookstore.

The Washington Post

Celebrate literature with The Washington Post through an exciting series of activities. Families are invited to attend animated readings by local children’s book authors every hour from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and pick up color-your-own bookmarks throughout the day. The Post’s mascot, Ned the Newshound, will make a special appearance from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. to pose for photos with festivalgoers.

As part of the Post’s longstanding partnership with the festival as a charter sponsor, more than 20 Washington Post journalists and editors will moderate discussions with authors. A special stand-alone edition of the Post’s “Book World” covering festival programming will be available at the information booth and at the Post Pavilion.

Wells Fargo

Charter Sponsor Wells Fargo returns this year with children’s storytimes every half hour from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Wells Fargo Pavilion. The sponsor is also bringing out its D.C. Scores Zone, a fun place for people to celebrate soccer and learn more about D.C. United and meet the team mascot, Talon. As usual, the Wells Fargo Stagecoach and hands-on history activities also will be on-site. Wells Fargo will provide ASL interpretation all day.

10 a.m – 8 p.m. Children’s book readings every half hour

The Junior League of Washington

The Junior League of Washington (JLW) returns this year as the Library’s primary partner for volunteer support, a role the organization has played since 2003. More than 400 JLW volunteers will manage the book-signing lines and staff other locations throughout the festival. More information about JLW’s mission and literacy focus can be found at the organization’s table the day of the festival. Kids who collect all 52 stickers from the Pavilion of the States can pick up a special prize at the Junior League of Washington (JLW) table.

National Endowment for the Humanities

Visitors will be able to celebrate and engage with the humanities at the National Endowment for the Humanities booth. Attendees can see demonstrations of Walden, a first-person video game that re-creates the life and experiences of Henry David Thoreau at his enclave on Walden Pond. Posters, bookmarks, reading challenges, book lists and resource guides are available for librarians, teachers and readers of all ages. Pose with cutouts of historical figures Jane Austen, Frederick Douglass and Alexander Hamilton. A. Scott Berg, editor of “World War I and America” and the biographer of Woodrow Wilson and Charles Lindbergh, will also stop by in the afternoon.

Scholastic Inc.

Scholastic returns to the festival with an array of activities, giveaways and live-poetry performances the whole family can enjoy. Festivalgoers can pose for photos with their favorite literary characters, including Clifford the Big Red Dog®, Captain Underpants and Dog Man. Families will also enjoy the Reading Corner, featuring exciting new books and engaging read- alouds every hour from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

9 a.m. – 7 p.m. Children’s book readings on the hour

Reading is Fundamental

Reading is Fundamental (RIF) will have fun giveaways, including bookmarks, stickers, pens and totes. Visitors will learn about current programs and experience Literacy Central, RIF’s new, free digital portal with thousands of activities, games, reading passages and lesson plans designed to help parents and educators foster a love of reading and build literacy development in children. They can also enter a raffle for one of RIF’s classroom book collections.

White House Historical Association

The White House Historical Association will feature American historian William Seale and photographer Bruce White in their booth all day signing books and answering questions about the president’s house. Seale and White also will be on the Library of Congress Town Square stage at 2:35 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. to discuss their collaboration on the Association’s award-winning books on the history of the White House and the president’s neighborhood. The booth also will have free copies of White House History, the association’s quarterly journal. Contributors to the publication will be in attendance to answer questions.

National Endowment for the Arts

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) sponsors the Poetry & Prose stage of author presentations (Room 145AB), which will again feature readings by and discussions with award-winning writers and poets, many of whom have received NEA Literature Fellowships. The Poetry & Prose stage will open with performances by student champions from Poetry Out Loud, an NEA and Poetry Foundation program in which high-school students memorize and perform classic and contemporary poems in competition.

Mensa Education and Research Foundation

Pick up a Children’s Guide to the festival created by the Mensa Education & Research Foundation Library at the Children’s Purple Stage, Children’s Green Stage and information booth on the Lower Level. Download the guide (PDF, 5.96MB).