Broward County Library Presents "Journey to the Caribbean" at Children's BookFest on April 27, 2013 at West Regional Library

Storybook characters come alive at BookFest 2012.

Storybook characters come alive at BookFest.

DATE: March 14, 2013
MEDIA CONTACT: Nancy Murray, Libraries Division
PHONE: 954-357-7406

In celebration of El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/Book Day), Broward County Library presents the annual Children’s BookFest on Saturday, April 27, from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the West Regional Library, 8601 W. Broward Blvd., Plantation, FL 33324. This Caribbean-themed, free literary event lets youngsters ages 3 to 10 and their families experience a world of stories and fun. There will be a pre-celebration to kick off the festival on Saturday, April 20 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Hollywood Library, 2600 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, FL 33020. El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/Book Day), is a national celebration of children and reading.

Children's BookFest offers children the opportunity to meet famous authors, hear professional storytellers, see top-notch children’s shows and interact with costumed characters. Upon arrival, children are encouraged to pick up a passport to begin their journey, and the first 1,000 young visitors will receive a free book to take home. There will be performers and storytellers representing the Bahamas, Cuba, Haiti and Jamaica, to name a few. Children will have the opportunity to be creative at the arts and crafts tables, get their face painted for free and enjoy food trucks on the premises from Gourmet Truck Expo. Featured events at Children’s BookFest will include:

  • 2012 Coretta Scott King Award winner Shane Evans, author of Underground: Finding the Light to Freedom, will entertain with his stories and music. He has more than 30 books to his credit including the Shanna book series, which is the basis for the widely popular Disney Channel Shanna Show
  • Stories will be shared and books will be signed by Gerald Hausman, an award-winning writer and multicultural storyteller who has published over 70 books for children and adults. He will share stories of his time in Jamaica and read from his book, The Boy From Nine Miles, which begins in the small village in Jamaica where Bob Marley opened his eyes to the world and to singing.
  • Performance of Haitian folkloric dances and stories will be presented by the Louinès Louinis Haitian Dance Theatre, Inc., a well-known dance company that keeps in touch with the ancient traditions of the many cultures that found new roots in Haiti  all unified through the overwhelming influence of Africa.
  • An incredible bilingual exploration of Latin-American folktales using words, rhythms and movement that begins with the simple phrase, "Había una vez/Once upon a time . . . " Flowing between Spanish and English, storyteller Carrie Sue Ayvar chooses from her large repertoire of personal and traditional tales to connect people, languages and cultures through her stories.
  • Performances by notable children’s entertainer Salty Sue (aka Suzy Hammer), a seriously silly pirate who brings music, magic, original tales of the sea and rich pirate lore from Florida history
  • Music and dance from the Bahamas Junkanoo Shakers and Mocko Jumbie Stilt Dancers.

Children and families can begin celebrating at the free Children’s BookFest pre-event on Saturday, April 20 at the Hollywood Branch Library. Pre-registration is required for this event; please contact Freda Mosquera at 954-357-7760 to register.

The Children's BookFest Pre-event includes:

  • Children’s drums and poetry workshop by Venezuelan poet Enrique Hidalgo
  • Performance by the folk dance company “Venezuela, Danza y Tambor” (Venezuela, Dances and Drums.)
  • Free books for the first 30 children that come to the program
  • Snacks courtesy of the Friends of Hollywood Branch Library

Children’s BookFest is funded by the Broward Public Library Foundation with support from Broward Family Life Magazine, the Miami Herald, the Friends of West Regional Library and The Charles F. and Esther M. Frye Foundation. Pre-celebration of the Children’s BookFest is funded by the Broward Public Library Foundation with additional support from the Friends of the Hollywood Branch Library. 

The award-winning Broward County Libraries Division, founded in 1974, is the ninth largest library system in the nation by population served and one of the busiest, with more than 9 million walk-in customers visiting its 40 locations annually. The library has more than 3.4 million items and 2,000 computers for public use and offers hundreds of events and programs to meet the needs of the Broward County's diverse community. It continues its strong emphasis on literacy, after-school programs and electronic access. In addition to our comprehensive web site,, customers can visit BCL WoW – Broward County Library Without Walls – for free eBooks, music, audiobooks, apps and more. Customers may also follow Libraries on Facebook and Twitter. Libraries Division also administers the services, programs, collections and exhibits of the Historical Commission.

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