Photo caption: Plum Creek Literacy Festival hosts a pre-event booksale to raise funds for the festival. Photo by Morgan German.
by Jayme Lowe
Over 13,500 students and adults from schools across the Midwest will come to Concordia’s annual Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival on Sept. 22-24.
Those who attend will hear presentations from 12 different authors, participate in writing workshops, do crafts, learn about the importance of reading and see a play adaptation of one of the author’s books.
“I’m so anxious for the day to get here and to see the children’s smiling faces,” festival director Dylan Teut said. “There’s this total sense of joy and excitement and love for books that you can just feel in the air for those three days.”
On the first day of the festival, the authors give presentations on literacy and reading to schools in the surrounding area, including schools in Lincoln, Omaha and York. The second day takes place on campus.
Up to 5,000 elementary students from Nebraska, Kansas and Iowa will be participating. All of the students will hear presentations by at least two authors in various locations across campus, such as the Walz Human Performance Complex, Thom Leadership Education Center as well as St. John Lutheran Church.
This year, the Plum Creek play is an adaptation of Sara Pennypacker’s “Completely Clementine,” the last book in the Clementine series, about a young third grade girl trying to understand the world.
Professor Bryan Moore adapted the book into a script, and seniors Elyssia Finch and Libby Klein are the directors with roughly 20 students involved onstage and behind the scenes.
“We have worked on this show, and we are excited to share it with everyone,” Finch said in an email interview. The play has a total of four performances on Friday, Sept. 22, three for festival participants and one at 7 p.m. for the public. Performances will take place in the Black Box Theatre.
The third and final day of the festival is the adult conference. All of the authors, as well as literacy experts and educators, come and discuss literacy and reading. This year’s featured speaker is Louis Sachar, the Newbery-Award-winning author of “Holes.”
“Our main goal is to inspire young writers, readers, (and) illustrators,” Teut said.
Check our site again after the weekend for more coverage of Plum Creek Literacy Festival!