Librarians and authors head to Gadsden for statewide convention


By Sarrah Peters

News Editor

Alabama librarians and authors will be headed to Gadsden for the Alabama Library Association 2016 Annual Convention on April 12 through 15.

This year’s theme is “Libraries: ImPOSSIBLE,” to showcase how libraries can achieve the impossible.

The convention will start with showcasing the Hometown Teams exhibit currently on display in the Gadsden Public Library. 

On Tuesday, attendees are invited to attend the Welcome Reception Block Party, which will take place on Broad Street in downtown Gadsden. Matt Leder will play live jazz music and Atlanta-based circus group Imperial Opa will perform. 

Also on Tuesday night  poet Beth Ann Fennelly will host “The Art of the Pub Crawl.” The Pub Crawl is an idea of Carol Wright’s to discuss one element of a literature at each pub attended. It is described as more in-depth, book club.

Wednesday morning librarians will see keynote speaker Joshilyn Jackson, a New York Times bestseller.

The big event for this year’s convention  is Books-A-Million Author Expo on Wednesday, April 13. The Author Expo will showcase 32 authors.

“It’s the first time we have done this even for a convention,” said Gadsden Library Director Amanda Jackson.

Jackson explained that they wanted to do something really big for this year’s event. 

“What librarians want more than anything is the opportunity to meet authors,” said Jackson. “They are like our rockstars.”

With 32 authors at the expo, there is a wide variety of genre and reading levels. Books-A-Million will provide books for purchase. Literary favorites include Ravi Howard, Joshilyn Jackson, Rick Bragg, Irene Latham, Christie Craig (also known as C.C. Hunter) and Don Noble among many others. The event will include music by the Etowah Youth Orchestra and light appetizers.

“Outside of it being just super-cool to have that many authors here, to get to meet them, to get their books signed, we really also want to introduce some libraries who might not have authors in their communities to the idea of how accessible it is to bring authors to your communities,” said Jackson.

These events are not typically open to the public, but with an event this huge, the convention made an exception with the Author Expo. 

The public can purchase tickets from the library or the Gadsden Museum of Art for $10. The deadline to purchase tickets is today, April 1!

For more information call 256-549-4699 ext. 105 for Amanda or ext. 107 for Carol.

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