Festival du Livre Gatineau Book Festival supports literacy and local authors
The upcoming Festival du Livre Gatineau Book Festival, organized by The Gatineau Anglophone Writing Group (GAWG) in collaboration with the Regional Association of West Quebecers (RAWQ), the Western Quebec Literacy Council, and Librairie Michabou/ La Maison anglaise Gatineau, is set to take place on September 8 and 9 at Galeries Aylmer Mall.
This two-day event aims to highlight the talents of local writers while promoting literacy awareness in the community. The festival coincides with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) International Literacy Day, observed on September 8, which seeks to shed light on the importance of literacy and education worldwide.
"The inception of the Gatineau Book Festival finds its origins in the collaborative efforts of a grassroots collective known as the Gatineau Anglophone Writing Group,” said Linda Sparks, the coordinator of GAWG. “Our assembly revolves around the exploration of our written expressions, sharing of creative concepts, and advancement of literary undertakings. Recognizing the potential of uniting our local authors with the community, particularly within the communal epicentre of the Aylmer Mall, we envisioned the concept of a book festival. This platform serves as a juncture for fostering interactions between our writers and the public, all while nurturing literacy initiatives. This endeavor offers both an avenue for engaging with the audience and a conduit for advocating literacy awareness." she added.
GAWG, RAWQ, and their partners have put together an engaging agenda that spans from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm on both days. The festival's schedule is packed with opportunities to meet and engage with prominent authors. On Friday, September 8, the lineup includes authors like Greg Graham, Jo Rioux, Richard Bégin, Paul Bisson, Mary Jane Maffini, Derek Kunsken, and Thom Whalen. Saturday, September 9, features authors such as Catherine Austen, Natacha Belair, Remy Beaulieu, Rick Henderson, Michelle Mondoux, Michelle Sinclair, and Tomson Highway.
The Galeries Aylmer Mall, known as a community hub, has opened its doors to this important event. The festival encourages the participation of the general public, young families, and school-age children to celebrate the love for literature and knowledge. Beyond showcasing local and international writers, the festival will host various literacy organizations to promote their programs and initiatives.
"Embracing the significance of the occasion," remarked Guy Leblanc, Aylmer Mall's manager, "we take immense pride in endorsing the objectives of the Gatineau Book Festival. Coinciding with the commencement of the academic year, this event serves as a beacon for literacy promotion while effectively uniting the community right here within our mall."
GAWG's primary objective is to advocate for literature across all age groups while commemorating International Literacy Day. The festival is a platform for writers to read excerpts from their works and share their insights into the world of literature and writing. Attendees will also have the chance to engage in book signings and enter daily draws for gift certificates from local businesses.
Photo caption: Faces behind the Gatineau Book Festival: Hayley Campbell representing the Regional Association of West Quebecers, Mike Mason, General Manager of Michabou/La Maison Anglaise Book Store, Linda Sparks, coordinator of the Gatineau Anglophone Writing Group and Guy Leblanc, Aylmer Mall Manager. Missing from the photo: Greg Graham of the Western Quebec Literacy Council from Campbell's Bay.
Photo credit: Tashi Farmilo