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RI Archives: Arts

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Spencertown Academy Festival of Books

Friday, September 3 - Monday, September 6
Rural Intelligence Arts
This weekend bookworms and bibliophiles by the thousands will descend upon the tiny hamlet of Spencertown, NY for the Spencertown Academy’s Fifth Annual Festival of Books, three days of free programs featuring more than twenty nationally and internationally-known authors, a sale of gently broken-in books, a gallery of book-themed photographs, children’s book-related activities, and, of course, parties.  On Friday night, a cocktail reception at the Academy for members and friends will feature “A Few Words about Food,” readings selected by Wesley Brown, professor emeritus at Rutgers University, and read by, among others, Ralph Jannetti, proprietor of Ralph’s Pretty Good Cafe in Chatham, who will recite “Coffee,” a poem by Ogden Nash.  On Sunday night, the action shifts to the grounds of the Austerlitz Historical Society, scene of this year’s Books & Blues Barbecue. 
 
Rural Intelligence Arts The Festival theme this year, Books That Changed My Life, emerged some months ago when the writer Susan Orlean, posting on Twitter, posed the question, “What book changed your life?”  and received tens of thousands of replies citing everything from math textbooks to the Bible, classics to contemporary fiction.  Orlean, who lives in Gallatin, will be keynote speaker at the festival, one of twenty distinguished authors, including Ann Hood, Madhur Jaffrey, Sally Helgesen, and Emily Arnold McCully who will conduct presentations, readings and/or book signings.  Orlean, a staff writer at The New Yorker and author of, among other books,  The Orchid Thief, will be interviewed at noon on Saturday by the author Sheila Weller.  The topic: the tweet that turned into a phenomenon. 
 
Star-power aside, the heart of this Festival is and always has been the giant book sale, featuring over 10,000 titles, nearly all priced between $1 and $3 (the only exceptions: a special selection of attractively-priced first editions and rare books). Carefully sorted and organized by dozens of volunteers who have worked throughout the summer, the quality of the books donated this year is outstanding, according to Book Sale chair Allan Davidson.  “There are literally thousands of great books, particularly in literary fiction, history, biography, and memoir.  Shoppers will not be disappointed.”
 
Spencertown Academy Festival of Books
790 Route 203,
Spencertown, NY
First early buying opportunity and cocktail party/$25, Friday 6 p.m.
Second early-buying opportunity/$20, Saturday, 8 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Book sale: Saturday & Sunday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Monday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m./free
Special programs for adults, Saturday noon - 6 p.m.
Special Programs for Children

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Posted by Marilyn Bethany on 08/30/10 at 08:58 AM • Permalink