Last Saturday (March 12), Chauni Haslet, owner of All for Kids Books & Music in Seattle, turned a birthday party into a all-out book festival. On the occasion of her 60th birthday, Haslet arranged for more than 60 children's book authors and illustrators to appear at 19 local branches of the Seattle Public Library as part of the state's first-ever Children's Book Celebration. Haslet believes it was one of the largest gatherings of children's authors in one place at one time.
Authors and illustrators who attended (many of whom reside in the region) included Jack Prelutsky, Karen Cushman, Michael Hoeye, Tom Bodett, Nina Laden, Petra Mathers, Graham Salisbury, Janet S. Wong, Paul Owen Lewis, Ken Mochizuki, George Shannon and Jennifer Holm. Author/illustrator Alexandra Day came to the festivities with Carl, her famous Rottweiler. All programs were free to the public and money earned from the sale of books benefited the Seattle Public Library Foundation.
After the day's events, participants, along with local teachers and librarians, helped Chauni celebrate her "I hate to admit I'm going to be 60" party at the Seattle Central Library.