Inaugural Center City Literary Festival, Oct. 12

Friday, September 27, 2013

The first UNC Charlotte Center City Literary Festival will be on Saturday, Oct. 12; a new event, the festival will feature a carnival-like program for children in the afternoon with a separate evening event geared toward adults.

Mark West, chair of the English Department, and Donell Stines-Jones, community outreach coordinator for UNC Charlotte Center City, are the festival co-organizers. They noted this festival will showcase writers associated with the University as well as Charlotte-area artists.

Gail Haley, Andrew Hartley, Janaka Lewis and Elizabeth Murray are among the authors who will participate in the children’s program, which will be from noon to 3:30 p.m. 

Haley, the only picture book author from North Carolina to win the Caldecott Medal, will read from “The Green Man.” Hartley is the Russell Robinson Distinguished Professor of Shakespeare, and he authored a highly successful series of fantasy books for children. The first volume in this series is “Darwen Arkwright and the Peregrine Pact.”  Lewis, who teaches African American literature in the English Department, is the author of the picture book “Brown All Over.” Murray teaches courses related to theatre education, and she also writes plays for children.

In keeping with the carnival-like theme planned for the children’s event, there will be a giant Scrabble board (weather permitting), a viewing of the 30-foot Blue Heron puppet created by World of Good Creations and the unveiling of a new electric ART car. Various artists and organizations will sponsor activities, too.

For the adult evening program, scheduled for 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., there will be readings by Karen Cox, Hartley and Aimee Parkison.  Cox, a history professor, is the author of “Dreaming of Dixie: How the South Was Created in American Popular Culture.” Hartley will read from “Macbeth, A Novel,” co-authored with David Hewson. Parkison, a creative writing professor in the English Department, is author of the short story collection “The Innocent Party.”

Opera singer Sarah Jones will perform as guests arrive and take their seats.