Libraries have always been special places for me—wandering among all those books is simultaneously calming and thrilling. I realize that’s a contradiction, but it’s the truth just the same. So when you throw a bunch of authors and illustrators into the mix, it just gets better. The result—CWILL BC’s Second Annual Spring Book Hatching.
Once again the Vancouver Public Library provided the venue. This year presenters set up their tables on the lower level in the Moat, and the sun streamed in through the glass ceiling, brightening spirits and beckoning library visitors to descend the open stairway and join the festivities. Using last year’s Hatching as a guide, the planning committee put their heads together to make this year’s event even better. Hours and hours before the public arrived they were buzzing around like a swarm of very organized bees, and by the time the presenters got there, the tables and chairs were already in place and there were colourful pinwheel mobiles dangling cheerfully from above. One of the most noteworthy changes to the Hatching was the allocation of the Peter Kaye Room as the site for authors and illustrators to introduce their books. The audience could grab a tea or coffee and a snack, sit down, and enjoy the slide show put together by Kirsti Anne Wakelin. This new arrangement provided a quiet comfortable space for the audience to hear about the titles being hatched, while the hustle and bustle of the Moat went on uninterrupted.
For two hours, the place hummed. Upon arrival, guests were given a Spring Book Hatching goodie-bag and began their tour of the Moat, stopping at all the tables to talk to the authors and illustrators, add bookmarks, stickers, and other treasures to their bags, and to get their passports signed for a chance at the draw for a great collection of books. There were mini activity tables set up for the little people, and somewhere balloon creations were being made and shared with the kids. I even noticed decals on a number of children’s cheeks, though I never had the chance to seek out the source.
Non-participating CWILLers were on hand to offer moral support, and Cynthia Nugent was flitting about with Jacquie Pearce’s camera, catching the afternoon in pictures. Every table offered something unique, so there was a lot for people to see and do. Traffic past the table I shared with Laura Langston was pretty much non-stop (it might have had something to do with the dog dish Laura had filled with chocolate coins), so that the time seemed to fly by and three o’clock arrived before we knew it.
I only got to hear book talks from presenters in my group, but I did get to meet THE famous Kendra Kandlestar, the central character of Lee Edward Fodi’s wonderful books. It was a thrill! (But I forgot to ask who does her hair.)
From my perspective, the Hatching was a great success, and a good time was had by all. Thanks to the VPL for providing the venue, Pandora’s Collective for emceeing the event, the SPCA Kids Club for their support, Blackberry Books for being on hand with all the books, Library Square Blenz for the coffee, and Steamworks for all the tasty goodies. Special thanks to the planning committee for all their hard work (James McCann, kc dyer, Lee Edward Födi, Jacquieline Pearce, Kirsti Anne Wakelin, Kathryn Shoemaker, and Joan Stuchner).
See you all next year!