JACKSON—Each year, thousands of people gather at the state capitol complex for the Mississippi Book Festival. Over its five years of existence, more than 750 authors and 20,000 people have attended, data from the festival show. The City of Jackson recognized the festival's influence and importance at the Aug. 6 meeting.
Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba called the upcoming book festival kicking off Aug. 17 a "world-class event" and said people travel from all over the world to attend.
"When we think about what Jackson has offered to the world, one of the things we fail to truly appreciate is that we have made such significant contributions to the literary arts," he said. "There are so many literary geniuses that have held from this sacred ground."
Holly Lange, executive director of the book festival, said Dav Pilkey, author of the "Captain Underpants" and the "Dog Man" series, will launch his new book at the festival. The event marks the first stop on his tour, she said. Lange said Pilkey is also going to meet with 4,200 schoolchildren, who all will get a free copy of his book, at Thalia Mara Hall on Friday morning, Aug. 16.
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor is also attending the festival and will visit with children that Friday, Aug. 16. During the festival the next day, she will be on a panel with Newton County native and author Margaret McMullan at 10:45 a.m. in the sanctuary at Galloway United Methodist Church (305 N. Congress St.). Sotomayor will do a book signing at noon in Galloway's parlor.
"We like to give away books. We love to encourage reading, and there is something for everyone at the book festival, even if you don't love to read," Lange said at the council meeting.
The festival is Saturday, Aug. 17, at the Mississippi State Capitol