February 7th, 2021
MANKATO, Minn.—The Deep Valley Book Festival will hold its first “cabin fever” virtual gathering of authors and readers the weekend of March 6-7.
After several successful years of hosting a fall festival, organizers decided to expand with a March event this year.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced the festival to go virtual in October 2020. The success of that event, combined with the need to foster community connections despite continued isolation and social distancing, prompted organizers to offer a virtual gathering of readers and writers in March.
“It’s no surprise that the pandemic has put a renewed focused on books and reading,” says Julie Schrader, festival coordinator. “We see this as an opportunity to introduce readers to new and established authors from our region and beyond.”
Minnesota author Margi Preus will be the keynote speaker. Her book for young people, Heart of a Samurai, was a New York Times bestseller and Newbery Honor Book. She also is the author of the “Enchantment Lake” series of books for young readers. Preus will give a keynote interview at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 6.
Everyone is invited to do a “Cabin Fever Reads” of Preus’ book, The Littlest Voyaguer, to discuss with Preus at 1 p.m. Sunday. She will be doing a Q&A with a fourth-grade class from the New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva school district and also will take questions from the audience.
In addition to Preus, other programming features mini workshops in memoir, mystery, young adult fiction, and illustration. A variety of authors will also give panel presentations and a new authors showcase will highlight new books.
Attendance is free. Go to www.deepvalleybookfestival.com for more information and to register for sessions, and like “Deep Valley Book Festival” on Facebook for frequent updates. The festival is generously supported by Free Press Media, Minnesota Heritage Publishing, and the Minnesota State Arts Board.