Adirondack Family Book Fest kicks off this Saturday

LAKE PLACID — Local author Benjamin Giroux will open the first Adirondack Family Book Festival this Saturday with a deeply personal talk about the importance of supporting and listening to youth voices.

The festival will be held outdoors at the John Brown Farm State Historic Site, 115 John Brown Road in Lake Placid, and is free and open to all ages. Festival grounds open at 9:30 a.m. and the day ends at 4 p.m. following a Youth Voices panel. In case of inclement weather, it will be moved indoors to the Lake Placid Middle-High School.

Giroux, now a rising high school junior, was 10 years-old when he wrote a poem called “I Am Odd, I Am New” about living with autism. With his reassuring message that being different is a good thing, Giroux has been the face of the National Autism Association’s antibullying campaign. His talk will start at 9:50 a.m.

“I’m excited to be part of this festival, especially since it’s the first year,” said Giroux, from his Plattsburgh home. “It’s really cool that I get to kick off the day talking about the importance of giving kids a voice, especially kids on the spectrum.”

Adalyne Perryman, a senior studying English literature at SUNY Oneonta, and Olivia Mair, a rising freshman at Guilderland High School near Albany, have been involved in planning the festival and will introduce authors, help with arts and crafts activities, and participate on the Youth Voices panel.

“I’ve grown up in Lake Placid, and especially the Lake Placid Public Library,” said Perryman. “Books are intertwined with my youth and I’m excited for the festival.”

Mair added that “it’s great we’re doing this festival because kids are less into reading nowadays and I feel like getting to know some great authors and learning about new books could get them excited about reading again.”

Authors and artists will read from and talk about their work and be on hand throughout the day to meet their readers and autograph books. In addition to Ben Giroux, they include: Tracey Baptiste, Jason Chin, Kyle Lukoff, Linda Sue Park, Amy Guglielmo, Kekla Magoon, Calvin Alexander Ramsey, Joseph Bruchac, Maxwell Eaton, III, Rajani LaRocca, Kate Messner and Laura Ruby.

Plattsburgh author/artist and Creative Director of Reading Rainbow Live Amy Guglielmo has planned crafts activities including making flower and nature crowns and folded creature puppets until 3 p.m. There are three StoryWalks on site and an opportunity for children to plant sunflower seeds to take home. Families are encouraged to pack a picnic lunch.

For more information on this year’s authors and the festival schedule go to adirondackfamilybookfestival.wordpress.com or contact John Brown Lives! at 518-744-7112 or info@johnbrownlives.org.


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