The Cooperative Children's Book Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s School of Education held a children’s literature trivia contest Friday, November 7. The CCBC Bowl was held to celebrate the mission of the CCBC, which is a non-circulating research, examination, and study library for Wisconsin educators, librarians, and others interested in children’s literature. The CCBC issues annually its report on the number of children’s books published in the U.S. that year by and/or about people of color; its statistics on the continuing lack of diversity in children’s books and publishing has been cited by We Need Diverse Books and other groups and individuals pushing for more multicultural books being published and made accessible to young readers.

CCBC Bowl was modeled on an event held last spring by Children’s Books Boston — which was in turn inspired by the Children’s Book Council’s Annual Golden Bunnies trivia contest, now in its 11th year. The CCBC Bowl was planned by Mary Morgan and Catherine Baer of the CCBC's Friends Board, with assistance from the Center’s director, K.T. Horning. Questions were supplied by CCBC librarians; approximately 100 children’s literature enthusiasts sorted into 10 teams participated in the CCBC Bowl, which the CCBC hopes to make an annual event. A silent auction of books and swag donated by Wisconsin authors and Friends of the CCBC was also part of the evening’s festivities.

All photos by J. Matzner.

Quiz Master Kevin Henkes begins the first of three rounds of 10 questions.

Teams competed for the grand prize, a statuette of Babe the Blue Ox, trusty companion to Paul Bunyan, whom Wisconsin claims as its native son (as do Michigan, Minnesota, Maine, and California).

CCBC librarians Merri Lindgren (l.) and Megan Schliesman served as official scorekeepers, and sat in the Lightbulb Lab.

A deliberation among team members.

Teams were encouraged to come up with clever names. Pictured are three members of the Captain Underpanties team.

Illustrator Tom Lichtenheld and his wife, Jan Miller, competing on the team called ! (after his 2013 picture book of the same name).

The Wild Things team took first place; Kevin Henkes presented them with the Babe the Blue Ox trophy.

In addition to winning possession of the trophy for one year, each winning team member received a set of Henkes’s books, which were contributed by his publisher, Greenwillow. Henkes inscribed copies of the books to the winners.