Twin Cities Book Festival
Saturday, October 15, 2016
2016 Festival Recap
Opening Night Events
Rain Taxi’s Opening Night Party was heavily attended by booklovers, authors, and exhibitors to celebrate the 16th Twin Cities Book Festival. It segued nicely into a talk by author Kathryn Aalto, presenting her book The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh to a packed audience!
Exhibit Hall and Morning Mingle in Progress Center
The 16th Annual Twin Cities Book Festival, held on October 15, 2016, started with a bang as over 30 local authors gathered for a Morning Mingle—poets, novelists, essayists and more met with Festival attendees and signed books. Participating authors were: Beth Blair
Richard Broderick, Carl Brookins, Frank Bures, Sharon Chmielarz, John Coy, Allen Eskens, Michael Fallon, Peter Geye, Rachel Gold, David Housewright, Dylan Hicks, Wing Young Huie, Marlon James, E. Eero Johnson , Linda & Kathryn Koutsky, Julie Kramer, Michelle Leon, Jess Lourey, Gretchen Marquette, Anna George Meek, Kirstin Cronn-Mills, Chris Monroe, Amy Munson, Kathleen Novak, Benjamin Percy, Lenny Russo, Charlie Quimby, Su Smallen, Faith Sullivan, Krista Tippett, and Connie Wanek. Over the course of the day, thousands thronged the exhibit hall to peruse the nearly 150 publishers, literary organizations, magazines, authors, and more who presented great books, author signings, giveaways, deals, and fun all day long. With its great prices, Rain Taxi’s Used Book and Record Bonanza sent hundreds of treasure hunters home with bargains galore! And plenty of attendees helped create a giant collage at the Collagathon!
Featured Author Readings in the Fine Arts Building
The Festival kicked off the morning with an exuberant group of Minnesota writers discussing why rural Midwestern Life is ridiculous at the Are We Making Fun of Us? panel and celebrating Stephanie Wilbur Ash’s book The Annie Year. Joining Stephanie were Jason Good, Geoff Herbach, John Jodzio, and Mary Mack. Afterwards, two stages fired up with terrific presentations. On the Rain Stage, poets Michael Waters, Janice N. Harrington, and Ray Gonzalez gathered to celebrate the 40th anniversary of BOA Editions. Comics great Eddie Campbell presented his art from Bacchus and other works. Comedian Phoebe Robinson read from her debut collection of essays You Can’t Touch My Hair. And literary legends Francine Prose and Charles Baxter discussed their new books with Rain Taxi editor Eric Lorberer.
On the Taxi Stage, Kevin Smokler and Kirby Gann discussed how their new books pay homage to a nostalgic past that may not live up to modern standards. Three international voices, Lidija Dimkovska, Derek Palacio, and Karan Mahajan, joined forces to discuss how the personal and political collide in their books. Two esteemed Canadian writers, poet Fred Wah and novelist André Alexis, read from their current publications. And poster king Mitch Putnam was joined by local artists Wes Winship, Mike Davis, and Dan Black to discuss his over-sized deluxe OMG Posters: A Decade of Rock Art, moderated by The Current’s own Mary Lucia.
The Children’s Pavilion entertained young children from 10am to 3pm, with music, activities, and storybook readings. Stephen and Trisha Speed Shaskan rocked the room with music and readings from their co-created book Punk Skunks. Kare11’s Belinda Jensen taught children about the wonders of weather. Illustrators Philip C. Stead and Erin E. Stead joined author Michelle Cuevas to present The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles.
On the Young Readers and Teen stage, three Minnesota authors, Abby Cooper, Brian Farrey, and Kelly Barnhill, presented their amazing works of magical worlds. Then rock star authors Stuart Gibbs, Sarah Mlynowski, and M.A. Larson took the stage to present their best-selling books. And Minnesota Book Award winner Shannon Gibney led an energetic conversation with A. S. King, Kathleen Glasgow, and Lara Avery, about the thought-provoking themes of their recent works.
The Twin Cities Book Festival—brought to you by Rain Taxi—is not only the largest and most important literary gathering in the Upper Midwest, it is the annual get-together for the Twin Cities’ devoted literary community. This FREE, day-long festival brings people together to celebrate our vibrant literary culture. The festival welcomes ‘rock star’ authors, local literary heroes, publishers, magazines, booksellers—all of whom connect over great books and conversations. Please contact us at bookfest [at] raintaxi [dot] com to inquire about ADA accessibility.
2016 Book Festival Sponsors
This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.
Rain Taxi's activities are made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.