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University of Iowa News Release


May 13, 2009

Iowa City Book Festival set for July 18

As a UNESCO City of Literature, Iowa City is home to a vibrant community of readers, writers and bookmakers. This summer, a new festival will celebrate and investigate the city's literary connections. The inaugural Iowa City Book Festival will be held Saturday, July 18, in Gibson Square outside the UI Main Library's south entrance.

Presented by the University of Iowa Libraries and the University of Iowa Press, the festival will feature a mix of local and regional booksellers with new and used books for sale, a music stage, children's activities, food vendors, book arts demonstrations, readings and panel discussions.

The Shambaugh Author Series will bring a mix of local, regional and national authors from a variety of genres to the Festival. Additionally, how-to discussions and hands-on workshops will give festival-goers opportunities to interact in a small group setting with other readers, writers and local literary experts on a wide range of topics. Readings and discussions will take place primarily within the library.

Discussions will focus on how to find or start a book discussion group; how to get involved with adult literacy programs in Iowa City; how to write a literary blog; how writers use libraries and archives to research; and how to work with a writers' group. The workshops will provide hands-on opportunities to use library resources to find consumer health information, add historical context to genealogical research, or read reviews of the latest best-sellers.

This first year of the Iowa City Book Festival will also commemorate the acquisition of the Libraries' 5 millionth volume and the UI Press' 40th anniversary. To recognize this partnership, the Libraries selected one of the Press' recent publications -- "The Biographical Dictionary of Iowa," edited by David Hudson, Marvin Bergman and Loren Horton. In addition to adding the physical book to the Libraries' collection, staff are developing a digital, fully searchable version of the book in the Iowa Digital Library.

Bergman will be among the speakers of the Shambaugh Author Series and UI Librarians will demonstrate the functionality of the Libraries' digital version of this Iowa reference resource.

More information and updates about the Festival can be found at
STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Kristi Bontrager, University of Iowa Libraries, 319-335-5960; George McCrory, University News Services, 319-384-0012,