Worthy event for 'city that reads' Book festival: More than 20 authors will participate in first-ever celebration.

September 15, 1996

BALTIMORE CATCHES a lot of grief for the motto Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke chose for it, "the city that reads." It seems a joke when one considers problems within the public schools.

But Baltimore does have an important literary history and one of the finest public libraries in the nation in the Enoch Pratt. It is therefore appropriate that the city celebrate its first Baltimore Book Festival, Sept. 28-29, at Mount Vernon Place. Indeed, one wonders why it hasn't done so before now.

The outdoor event will include storytelling, poetry readings, children's activities, author signings, literary walking tours, book selling, displays by publishing companies, bookbinding demonstrations, live music and a cafe. Poets Sharon Olds, Mark Strand and Roland Flint will read from their published works, as will mystery novel writer Barbara Mikulski, Maryland's junior U.S. senator.

This promises to be an important annual event that will help bring the greater Baltimore community together in a downtown setting where people can forget their differences and share their love for the written word. Support of this book festival will show just how much this really is a "city that reads." If all goes as planned, you will find the evidence near Washington Monument.

Pub Date: 9/15/96

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