Volunteers to Give Away a Half Million Free Books on Tuesday, April 23rd
World Book Night U.S. honorary national chairpeople, Ann Patchett and James Patterson, were among a dozen authors who hosted World Book Night Kick-Off Events on the night before World Book Night. Monday, April 22, events were held in libraries and bookstores in San Antonio, Denver, Cambridge, Berkeley, and New York City, as well as Chetek, Wisconsin, and Pass Christian, Mississippi. Patterson and Patchett hosted a special event at Parnassus Books in Nashville. A book and music kick-off was held at a club in Portland, Oregon; St. Louis givers were invited to an arts space hosted by local booksellers, and there were WBN Poetry Nights in Brooklyn and Los Angeles. Closing day Book & Rose events are being held on April 23 in Craig, AK; Hilo, HI; Waterville, ME; and Wichita, KS, as well as Chicago, Iowa City, Seattle, Pasadena and Coral Gables. A full schedule of events is at WBN’s Facebook page and a map showing locations is available at US.WorldBookNight.org.
Additionally, many of the volunteer givers met each other in pre-World Book Night receptions last week at hundreds of bookstores and libraries. New this year, WBN accepted applications from over 150 groups that are doing coordinated activities, such as a downtown business effort in Sandusky, Michigan, a “book brigade” on Hollywood Boulevard, and the Prison Book Project in Massachusetts.
There are numerous individual stories of open-heartedness, from a Bronx D.A. to a Seattle bartender, a Bronx cabdriver giving from inside his taxi to a giver at an Alaskan harbormaster’s office reaching out to local fishermen.
Other unique spots givers have chosen to seek out readers include: ferry terminals, a hot dog stand, the Lincoln Memorial, Meals on Wheels centers, Dress for Success offices, Lackland Air Force Base, a national robotic competition, a Wii and X-box tournament, the High Line in New York City, Boston Common, and in a steel mill.