Big Blue Marble        Big Blue Marble Bookstore        Big Blue Marble
A neighborhood bookstore for Mt Airy and beyond

Mt. Airy Kids' Literary Festival

Friday, April 13, through Sunday, April 15, 2012

Big Blue Marble Bookstore is proud to present its sixth annual Mt. Airy Kids' Literary Festival! All events are FREE and open to the public! A detailed schedule is below.

All Weekend

The Craft Table! Big Blue Marble Bookstore will have our special craft table open all weekend, stocked with brightly colored paper, collage materials, and all kinds of other supplies to create your own books!
(In our Community Room, All Ages. Adult Supervision Required.)

Special Door Prizes! Winners will be randomly selected throughout the entire weekend to win free books, promotional goodies, and more. Stop by with your family and get a chance to go home with all kinds of special treats. (All Ages)

Friday, April 13

10:30am - Storytime with Amy Vaccarella.
Our weekly storytime led by Mt. Airy's own Amy Vaccarella celebrates Kids' Lit with singing, stories and a special craft!
(Ages 1 and up)

7:00pm - The Popularity Papers reading and pizza party with Amy Ignatow.
Amy Ignatow officially kicks off the festival with a reading from her newest book, The Popularity Papers:  The Rocky Road Trip of Lydia Goldblatt & Julie Graham-Chang (Abrams Books, 2012). When best friends Lydia and Julie set out on a summer road trip, they soon discover that the real journey lies in dealing with potentially rocky family dynamics. Will this brave duo make it home with their friendship intact? Only one way to find out. Free pizza will be served! (Ages 9 and up)

Amy Ignatow is a cartoonist and the author of the Popularity Papers series of scrapbook-style illustrated novels. She is a graduate of Moore College of Art and Design and also makes a decent tureen of chicken soup. Ignatow lives in Philadelphia with her husband, Mark, and their cat, Mathilda, who just isn’t very bright.

Saturday, April 14

10:00am - Fuddles reading and signing with Frans Vischer.
Author and illustrator Frans Vischer is traveling all the way from California to visit us! He'll be reading from his newest picture book Fuddles, about a fat, lazy house cat who's never experienced the Great Outdoors. One day, his family leaves the door open a crack and Fuddles seizes the chance to slip out, but things on the outside aren't quite as he expected. (Ages 4 to 7)

Frans Vischer has had a long career working as an illustrator on such films as The Princess and The Frog and Who Framed Roger Rabbit? at Disney, Cats Don't Dance at Warner Bros., and The Road To El Dorado at DreamWorks. He wrote his first book Jimmy Dabble (Dutton) in 2001. His latest book, Fuddles, was published by Simon & Schuster in 2011.

11:00am - Stop Snoring, Bernard! reading and craft with Zachariah OHora.
Zachariah OHora is the author and illustrator of the 2012 PA One Book selection Stop Snoring, Bernard! (Henry Holt, 2011). Bernard is an otter who loves curling up to go to sleep. But there is one little problem, Bernard snores... LOUDLY! So loudly that he keeps all of the otters awake during naptime. So loudly that Grumpy Giles tells Bernard to take his snoring somewhere else! Will Bernard find the perfect place to curl up and sleep? Join us for this very special reading and make your own Bernard paper bag puppet! (Ages 3 to 6)

Zachariah OHora is an award-winning illustrator and children's book author. Stop Snoring, Bernard!  is his first book for children and it is the recipient of the 2011 Society of Illustrator's Founders Award. He illustrates posters, album covers, toys, and his clients include The New York Times, The Atlantic, Philadelphia Magazine, Bloomberg Businessweek, and NPR. Zach lives and works in Narberth, PA with his wife Lydia, and sons Oskar and Teddy.  

12:00pm - Seriously Just Go to Sleep reading with Ricardo Cortes.
Illustrator Ricardo Cortes is probably best known for his work on the New York Times bestseller Go the F*** to Sleep (Akashic Books, 2011). Not to worry. He won't be reading that particular book at Kids' Lit Fest. Instead, he'll read and show slides from the brand new G-rated version, Seriously Just Go to Sleep (Akashic Books, 2012). The new version is 100% kid-appropriate, features updated artwork (including a celebrity cameo), and is designed especially for parents to share with their children. It's a fun and humorous approach to the (sometimes controversial) subject of bedtime! (Ages 3 and up)

Ricardo Cortes has illustrated books about grass, electricity, the Jamaican bobsled team, and Chinese food. His work has been featured in the New York Times, Vanity Fair, Entertainment Weekly, New York magazine, the Village Voice, the San Francisco Chronicle, and on the O'Reilly Factor and CNN. He lives in Brooklyn, NY, where he is working on a book about a shark. 

1:00pm - Amusement Trains: The Story of Freddy and Flash reading with Susan Johnson and Sueli Vieira.

Amusement Trains: The Story of Freddy and Flash, originated from a manuscript that was hidden for over half a century! Join us for an interactive reading of this whimsical tale about the adventures of amusement park train Freddy and his roller coaster car brother Flash. Includes authentic train sounds and a catchy sing-along to an original song! (Ages 4 and up)


Amusement Trains: The Story of Freddy and Flash, was written by Leta Gunn Dahlgren in the 1930's. The original manuscript was discovered in 2011 by her granddaughter, Susan Cadwalader Johnson, who added an introduction about her grandmother and partnered with Brazilian born illustrator Sueli Melo Vieira to bring the book to life with beautiful illustrations. 

2:00pm - The Boy Who Cried Alien reading with Brian Biggs.

Philadelphia author and illustrator Brian Biggs, will read from one of the many books he's illustrated, The Boy Who Cried Alien (Hyperion, 2012). It's The Boy Who Cried Wolf like you’ve never seen it before: with tentacles, wigs, and a secret code language that kids can decipher. Larry the Liar must help these friendly extra-terrestrials refuel their ship so they can get back home. But will the townspeople believe his intergalactic tale of glory? This reading also includes an interactive slide show of Brian's work. (Ages 4 and up)

Brian Biggs has lived in Philadelphia since 1999. He has worked as an art director and graphic designer, animator for interactivity and multimedia projects, teacher, writer, and illustrator. He is the author and illustrator of the three-book Everything Goes children’s book series (Balzer + Bray, 2011). He is the illustrator of I’m a T. Rex (Little Golden Books) and the eight-book series Brownie & Pearl (Beach Lane Books/Simon & Schuster).

3:00pm - Around the World reading with Matt Phelan.

Scott O'Dell award-winning graphic novelist and illustrator Matt Phelan will read from his latest book Around the World (Candlewick, 2011). The graphic novel follows the journeys of three dauntless adventures in the late 1800's who, inspired by Jules Verne's Around the World in Eighty Days, set out to circumnavigate the globe! In addition to reading from this exciting tale, Matt will also share tips on how to make your own graphic novel. (Ages 9 and up)

Matt Phelan is the illustrator of many books for young readers, including Always by Ann Stott and The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron, winner of the 2007 Newbery Medal. His graphic novel The Storm in the Barn (Candlewick, 2009) won the 2010 Scott O’Dell Award and has been adapted for stage by the Oregon Children’s Theatre in Portland, OR. Matt lives in Philadelphia.

4:00pm - Philadelphia Stories Jr. reading.
This brand new literary magazine especially for young writers (K-12) presents a reading by kids for kids. Several young writers published in the magazine's first issue will read their work and participate in a brief panel discussion about their experiences being published and how to submit writing. (Ages 10 and up)

Philadelphia Stories, Jr., a division of the nonprofit Philadelphia Stories, is a new literary magazine by writers age 18 and under who currently live in Pennsylvania, Delaware, or Southern New Jersey (writers must still be within K-12 education or home-schooled). Philadelphia Stories, Jr. expands the Philadelphia Stories’ mission to develop a community of writers, artists, and readers through the magazine and education programs by bringing these opportunities to area young writers and artists.

Sunday, April 15

NEW TIME! 11:00am - Waldorf School Puppet Play with Gwyn Linsalata.
The Waldorf School of Philadelphia presents artist and puppeteer Gwyn Linsalata as she performs two brand new puppet plays, The Old Women and the Little Mouse and How We Came to Have Umbrellas. (Ages 3-6)

Gwyn Linsalata is a trained and certified Waldorf Early Childhood Teacher and she teaches Parent-Child classes at the Waldorf School of Philadelphia. She has been teaching young children and performing puppet plays for the past eleven years. She also holds a backyard summer camp called TWIGS, for 3-6 year olds.

12:00pm - Sasquatch's Big Hairy Drawing Book cartooning activity with Chris McDonnell.

Author, illustrator and animator Chris McDonnell will stop by for what he promises will be a drawing free-for-all. So grab a pencil and get ready to mix it up with Chris as he uses his new interactive drawing guide, Sasquatch's Big Hairy Drawing Book (Chronicle Books, 2011), to lead some no-holds-barred doodle action. (Ages 6 and up)

Chris McDonnell has provided animation for a variety of programs including two seasons of the Adult Swim show Tom Goes To The Mayor, several episodes of the Nick Jr. show Yo Gabba Gabba!, and segments of the Season Cinco episode of Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!. He is currently a part-time faculty member of the University of the Arts in Philadelphia teaching Sequential Format in the illustration department and is a member of The Philly Cartoonists Society.

1:00pm - Little Dog Lost reading and craft with Monica Carnesi.

Artist, illustrator and librarian Monica Carnesi will read from her beautiful picture book Little Dog Lost: The True Story of a Brave Dog Named Baltic (Nancy Paulsen Books, 2012). On a cold winter day, a curious dog wandered onto a frozen river, and before he knew it he was traveling fast on a sheet of ice. Many people tried to help, but the dog could not be reached. Finally, after two nights and seventy-five miles, the little dog was saved by a ship out in the Baltic Sea! Monica will also lead special craft where kids can make their own Baltic paper dolls. (Ages 3 and up)

Monica Carnesi is an artist and a librarian, which allows her to combine her love for illustration and her passion for children's literature. Originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monica lives in Philadelphia with her husband and her own little dog.

2:00pm - Playing with Words: Creative Writing Games for Kids with Cordelia Jensen.

During this free workshop for 8-12-year-olds, they'll be playing writing games meant to unlock their creativity, generate ideas, and spark a bit of laughter with word play. (Ages 8-12)

Cordelia Jensen was Poet Laureate of Perry County in 2006 and 2007 and is completing her MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Cordelia works with Big Blue Marble Bookstore where she is surrounded by books and people who love stories and language, and is currently working on a YA novel of poems. She lives in West Mt. Airy with her husband, Jon, and six-year-old twins Tate and Lilly.

NEW TIME! 3:00pm - Music class with Tammy Keorkunian, Children's Music Express.

Tammy Keorkunian will lead a free music class for children, ages 3-5 years, and their caregivers. Kids will explore the many depths of early childhood music through singing, dancing, chanting, small/large movement activities and playing a variety of rhythm instruments. (Ages 3-5)

Tammy Keorkunian, MA, BA, founder/director of Children’s Music Express has been teaching parent/child music and movement classes since 1999. Her studies and experience in early childhood music education, kinesiology, and children’s yoga/mindfulness, have shaped her unique, warm, energetic and upbeat teaching style. Tammy offers classes in Manayunk, Jenkintown, Glenside, Elkins Park, and she plays the guitar, African djembe, various percussion instruments, including the zils, spoons, coffee cans and more!

4:00pm - Steps and Stones reading with Gail Silver.

Gail Silver is the author of the award-winning children's book Anh's Anger (Plum Blossom Books, 2009). She'll stop by to read and sign her latest book Steps and Stones (Plum Blossom Books, 2011), which follows the further adventures of Anh as he learns about slowing down and taking care of his strong emotions. A free Mommy-and-Me Yoga Class will be awarded to one lucky winner at this event. (Ages 4 and up)

Gail Silver, ERYT, JD., is the founder of Yoga Child, the Yoga Child school-based yoga and mindfulness program, Co-creator of the Mind Body Birth program, and the primary teacher of theYoga Child Teacher Training programs.
Gail is the author of award winning children's books Anh's Anger and Steps and Stones. She provides prenatal yoga editorials to the Expectant Mother's Guide, and has received many awards and honors for her classes, curriculum and children's yoga CD. Most importantly, Gail is blessed with the love and support of her husband, Michael, and their three children.

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