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Invitation to a Dream

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Book-lovers attending the 10th Annual National Book Festival on the National Mall Sept. 25 will have a chance to receive, free of charge, the official festival bookmark, reflecting the winning design in a contest for kids in grades K-8 sponsored by festival bookseller Borders.

It’s a very special bookmark, far more than a mere placeholder – it’s an invitation, really.

In letters that serve as windows to different scenes – each representing a different category of fiction – 6th-grade artist Delaney Benich from Indiana urges you to “DREAM,” offering this closing thought: “I can dream anything while reading.”

Delaney was one of hundreds of young artists thinking outside the rectangle in the contest, which called on the youngsters to be creative and convey their love of reading.

There were two other national winners, selected from more than 70 finalists.  Borders chose local winners in the nationwide contest, and a panel of judges including Margaret Pressler of the Washington Post’s KidsPost section, the Library’s teacher-in-residence Sara Suiter and Jane Gilchrist, director of the Library of Congress Young Readers Center, selected the top prizewinners.

Craig Hammond, a 2nd-grader from Nevada, won second place for his “I Love Reading” design showing a boy, a girl, a dog, a cat and a one-eyed outer-space alien – all on Cloud 9 with books in their hands.

Nicole Fernanda Peinado-Maldonado, a 4th-grader from Colorado, won third place with her illustration “Every Page is a Waiting Adventure,”showing a reading frog imagining himself as Darth Vader. 

“Picking the first, second, and third prize winner was really hard because all of the submissions were great,” said judge Jane Gilchrist of the Library’s Young Readers Center. “The ideas expressed on the bookmarks let me know that there’s a lot of imaginative drawing AND dynamic reading going on.

“By taking the time to create and submit a bookmark to the contest, all of the talented artists/readers should know that they are already part of this year’s National Book Festival even if they can’t join us here in Washington, DC on Saturday, September 25,”  Gilchrist said.

“It was a pleasure to team with the Library of Congress on the National Book Festival Official Bookmark contest – the first in the festival’s history,” said Larry Norton, Borders’ senior vice-president of merchandising, adult trade and children. “We were really impressed with all the imaginative designs … it’s truly inspiring to see kids so passionate about reading.”

Delaney, as the grand-prize winner, will receive a $500 Borders gift card, with another of equal value going to her school library; Craig and his school library each will receive Borders gift cards worth $250, and Nicole and her school library each will receive gift cards at the bookseller valued at $100.

Borders makes it possible for the tens of thousands of readers who attend the National Book Festival to purchase books by the more than 70 authors appearing at the festival, or featured in the Pavilion of the States.  All the better to snag an author autograph!

The festival, celebrating “A Decade of Words and Wonder,” returns to the National Mall, between 3rd and 7th Streets, on Saturday, Sept. 25 from 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., rain or shine.

Comments (2)

  1. Can’t wait to get to the Book Festival! This will be my fifth trip…flying in from Ohio for a fantastic day of authors and literature!

    Would LOVE to have the sponsors sell T-shirts with the poster design or some other reading slogan. What could be better than advertising our favorite activity- reading?! The profits could be donated to a reading program in a needy area. A win-win solution.

  2. Book is one thing of upgrade for human mental state. We can get conscience nutrition by reading books. Thank to literate lives mission.

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