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Great Valley Bookfest returns Oct. 10
Toni Raymus displays framed posters from the first two Great Valley Bookfests that feature signatures of all of the participating authors. - photo by HIME ROMERO/The Bulletin

Toni Raymus doesn’t see a book as a bunch of paper lined with printed words.

She sees it as a key to economic success, less crime, and fulfillment

It is why the founder of the Great Valley Bookfest and the small army of volunteers that have made the annual event a success devote their heart and soul into bringing authors, book lovers, and fledgling readers together.

“Reading is so, so important,” Raymus said. “It is so true that you need it to succeed in life.”

The free annual bookfest is Saturday, Oct. 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at The Promenade Shops at Orchard Valley near Bass Pro Shops.

Besides having more than 30 authors manning booths and making presentations, cookbook authors doing cooking demonstrations, arts and crafts, booksellers and gourmet food trucks there is a children’s pavilion and an open mic poetry slam. There is also a Sip and Spell contest sponsored by the Sierra High sophomore class that gets underway Thursday at Delicato Vineyards with the finalists having a “spell off” at the bookfest.

There is a kickoff costume parade at 10 a.m. Participants will be given a free Kazoo to parade to music through the author’s alley, around the lagoon, and into the festival.

The children’s pavilion will feature 10 authors with a wide repertoire of offerings from picture books and chapter books to science, mysteries and more. Costume characters on hand include Clark the Shark, Johnny Big Ears, and the Peachtree Kids. At 11 a.m. children can participate in skits with author Jennie Chadwick. Then at 1 a.m. author Bruce Hall will share his experiences as a writer, jazz musician, and “being raised by wolves.”

“He’s an amazing storyteller,” Raymus said of Hall and his yarn of being raised by wolves. “Kids find it real believable.”

There is also an interactive children’s area. It includes things such as free popcorn, Magic Jack fashioning balloon sculptures, magic acts, Bookfest coloring books, a chance to create a bookmark and/or a musical instrument, play games, and even explore ocean ecology.

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