Author and musician Gary Barwin, plays saxophone, leads an interactive storytelling session and reads from his award-wining books Seeing Stars, Magic Mustache and Racing Worm Brothers. Too much fun to miss! His novel Yiddish for Pirates will appear in 2016. Gary has taught writing at McMaster University, Mohawk College, and King’s University College and given workshops and writing classes in schools, libraries, camps, universities, and literacy programs across Canada and internationally.
Robert Blunsdon is a teacher with the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board. During his summer break he is the Director of the Rotary Summer Literacy Camp at Cathy Wever School, a free literacy-based day camp for junior kindergarten to Grade 5 students. Rob is a long-time musician who plays the guitar and has entertained and educated countless children through his music.
Rhyming romantic poet, storyteller and bookbinder Lance Darren Cole regales from his tales to inspire and engage, sharing Fables For Your Tables on the Telling Tales Stage. Well known to local audiences for his spontaneous rhymes and stories, Lance entertains the young and young at heart with his delightful trilogy of stories that combine fantasy with subtle reminders of kindness, thoughtfulness and positivity.
Creative Theatre Company specializes in theatre training and personal empowerment. Directors Claudette Brundage and Jennifer Walton have taught talented young people since 1990. They offer extracurricular classes, a summer acting camp, workshops for schools and the community, and skill-building Corporate workshops. Meet our students and alumni throughout the festival playing characters from beloved children’s literature. Jen and Claudette also conduct an interactive theatre game workshop today.
Lisa Dalrymple loves to share stories and rhymes and so does Stewie, the singing lizard in her award-winning picture book Skink on the Brink. While Stewie loves to make up songs, he’s not a big fan of his latest little ditty–that he’s a skink on the brink of extinction (he thinks). Lisa’s other children’s books include Bubbly Troubly Polar Bear and A Moose Goes A-Mummering.
Sometimes called Canada’s female Dr. Seuss, Sheree Fitch is an award-winning storyteller and author of over 30 books, including plays and non-fiction. She has traveled around the globe sharing her love of language and joy of reading. She holds honorary doctorates from three Canadian universities for her contributions to Canadian literature. Nimbus has reissued several of her classics and she’s at work on a novel.
Alma Fullerton was born in Ottawa. She grew up in a large military family and lived in Ontario, British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Germany. Alma struggled with reading until the age of nine. With the help of her grade four teacher, she realized she had dyslexia. Alma reads from her book In a Cloud of Dust and shares a craft activity based on the story.
The Hamilton Children’s Choir (HCC) is an internationally-renowned and award-winning children and youth choir, sharing the joys and benefits of singing, and believing that “If you can speak, you can sing.” Boasting 190 choristers ages 5 to 18, the HCC offers vocal training and music instruction. In 2014, the HCC was the only Canadian choir invited for the World Symposium on Choral Music in Seoul, South Korea. 2015 marks their 40th anniversary.
The Hamilton Youth Poets (HYP) have created a youth-focused spoken word community and a growing platform for youth to speak and be heard. Year ‘round HYP-lead friendly poetry competitions emphasize community and self-expression through hip- hop poetry, oral storytelling, and spoken word. It’s the art of telling authentic stories with the voices of young witnesses, celebrating their identity and finding a common ground through their narratives.
Carol-Ann Hoyte is a children’s poet from Montreal. She has edited two international poetry anthologies for children: Dear Tomato and And the Crowd Goes Wild!. Carol-Ann reads from these exciting collections and from her own works in an energetic and engaging presentation. She loves riddle poems, limericks, and novels in verse. When not working at a boys’ private school, she keeps busy taking care of her favourite boy of all – her son.
The Hamilton Public Library Puppeteers are a talented group of youth services staff who perform classic puppet shows as well as some new ones. Don’t miss the fun – a perfect option for the entire family.
Jude Johnson’s “Silly Singin’ and a Swingin’ Show” is not to be missed. Sing-a-longs, originals and old family favourites get you clapping and having family fun in the autumn sun. Jude has released nine recordings for both children and adults. She’s Hamilton’s Music Ambassador and founder/director of the MAD creative art school, celebrating their 30th year. Get your voices ready to sing and your dancing shoes on!
What can we learn from animals about writing? More than you think! As a zoologist turned author, Jess Keating has been sprayed by skunks, bitten by crocodiles, and been victim to the dreaded paper cut. Her middle grade novel, How to Outrun a Crocodile When Your Shoes are Untied was nominated for the 2015 Red Maple Award, with two sequels to follow. Join her in a lively chat to hear some wild tales, learn writing secrets, and find inspiration for your own stories!
Wesley King is the award-winning author of The Vindico series, and he’s rather tall. His first novel, The Vindico, won the Red Maple Award and was a Junior Library Guild Selection. His second novel, The Feros, was also a Junior Library Guild Selection. His latest novel, The Incredible Space Raiders (From Space!) is receiving rave reviews from critics and readers alike. His books are sold worldwide, and he loves promoting reading and writing to students everywhere.
Please join us and give a HOOT SALUTE in the musical reading of Lynne Kittredge-Fox’s new book OWL ON THE PROWL, the story of an Owl in search of his lost hoot. Accompanied by guitar, jingles, wiggles and giggles, you will be taken on a journey of team work, friendship and love. Come help in the search and GIVE A HOOT !!!
Adrienne Kress is a Toronto actor and author of the internationally published and award winning children’s novels Alex and the Ironic Gentleman and Timothy and the Dragon’s Gate, as well as the young adult novels, The Friday Society and Outcast. Adrienne will do a theatrical reading from one of her books and maybe just maybe teach everyone how to sword fight!
The Tweedle family — Mama, Papa, Frances and Francis — live in Toronto in 1903 … and my! Don’t they know how to have fun? They love exploring the wonderful world of new inventions that are cropping up EVERYWHERE. Electric cars! Telephones! Radios! There’s no end to the thrills. Monica Kulling is an award-winning author of over fifty books for children. She is best known for introducing biography to younger audiences. Her “Great Idea” series, stories of inventors, has garnered many accolades and awards.
Andrew Larsen loves stories. He’s been telling them for as long as he can remember. Some of those stories have grown up to be books, including The Imaginary Garden and In the Tree House, winner of 2014’s TD Kids Book Fan Choice award. He’s excited to introduce his newest book, See You Next Year, a quiet celebration of the magic and beauty of an annual summer vacation. Andrew and his family live in Toronto.
JonArno Lawson is a multi-award winning author of numerous books for children and adults. He will be presenting from two recent books – Sidewalk Flowers and Old MacDonald Had Her Farm. Children and adults of all ages are welcome to participate in this interactive presentation/workshop, where they’ll have an opportunity to give their interpretations of a wordless text, and a chance to develop their own.
Storytime is the best time! Don’t miss John’s super-interactive and fun storytime. John is a children’s librarian with the Mississauga Public Library. He brings an excitement to stories that will put a smile on everyone’s face. Be prepared to sing, dance and have an amazing time!
Where are YOUR books? With a fun and interactive drawing demo, author/illustrator Debbie Ridpath Ohi explains how she wrote and illustrated WHERE ARE MY BOOKS? offering tips for young writers and illustrators. Debbie is the illustrator of a dozen books including New York Times Notable Children’s Book I’M BORED by Michael Ian Black and Atheneum’s reissues of ARE YOU THERE GOD? IT’S ME MARGARET and FRECKLE JUICE by Judy Blume. Please do come by and help Spencer find his books!
Gillian O’Reilly has been the editor of Canadian Children’s Book News, published by the Canadian Children’s Book Centre, for nearly two decades. She will talk about the work of the CCBC, her “dream job” as editor, and why a CCBC membership offers such great value to aspiring writers, illustrators and children’s book lovers. Gillian is also the author of two books of non-fiction for children and is currently working on two more.
Pan Piper offers an appreciation for the steelpan, an instrument similar to the Vibraphone. With demonstrations of performance techniques and improvisation, he lets the audience discover the versatility and creativity the steelpan brings to various musical genres. Pan Piper shows how improvisation and innovation are innate to the steelpan and how the instrument is a natural vehicle for any form of music.
Neil Pasricha is one of the world’s leading experts on happiness and the power of positive thinking. He is the #1 International Bestselling Author of The Book of Awesome series with over a million copies sold in a dozen languages. He has given one of the most popular TED Talks of all time called “The 3 A’s of Awesome.” He wrote this new children’s book, Awesome is Everywhere, to teach his son the power of attitude, awareness, and authenticity.
Richard writes for kids and adults and has won Canadian and US awards. His latest books involve school bussing and the undead, steam-punk comics and onion rings, a developmentally-challenged teen fleeing terrorist kidnappers on skates, and a brief apocalypse. Fortunately, confusion is Richard’s natural state. Richard’s presentations are interactive. No handouts but there is some standing on chairs and a lot of laughing. Marks may go up. You might even lose weight!
Singing! Drawing! Puppets! Cute Ghosties! It’s Halloween night and the ghosts are marching in! Patricia Storms presents her new book, THE GHOSTS GO SPOOKING, written by Chrissy Bozik. Little ghosts go trick-or-treating by ones, twos, and up to ten in this spooky and fun-filled take on “The Ants Go Marching.” She is an author and illustrator of many children’s books, and lives and creates with her husband and two fat cats in a cozy old house in Toronto.
Hamilton’s TURKEY Rhubarb is Dale, Gerry and Paul. They sing traditional children’s tunes in English, French and Spanish, from North America, Mexico, Antigua, England, Scotland and Ireland. Their three albums and YouTube videos are very popular with young children and their families. They believe in diversity and their songs support this value. Music for clapping, dancing and singing along, their harmonies, humour and sense of fun are worth a listen!
Silly and fun, not to be missed! With seventeen books to his credit, Werner is one of Canada’s beloved authors and illustrators. Twice nominated for the Governor General’s award and winner of the Mr. Christie Book Award along with author Jean Little for Pippin the Christmas Pig, he was most recently awarded the 2011 CBA Libris for Children’s Picture Book of the Year, with author Helaine Becker, for Porcupine in a Pine Tree. Werner’s interactive sessions will have everyone smiling.