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Hebron High School News Online

The Hawk Eye

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Print Edition

Irving Convention Center to hold North Texas Teen Book Festival Apr. 27

Photo via North Texas Teen Book Festival
The Irving Convention Center will hold its 10th annual North Texas Teen Book Festival on Apr. 27 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Irving Convention Center will hold the North Texas Teen Book Festival (NTTBF) on Apr. 27 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. It will be the 10th annual Book Festival, so there will also be a 10-year promotion that includes free parking, concessions and numerous special guests, such as Jeff Kinney, R.L. Stine and Jerry Craft.

“Our attendees share their stories with us simply by visiting our festival,” Mary Hinson of the Irving Public Library said. “It’s like a choose-your-own-adventure. I can tell you about data analysis. After all, impact and success can be measured through numbers. We prefer to measure them through stories, and at NTTBF, the stories are endless.”

The event has been held through rain, hail or shine, including COVID-19. It started in 2015, with an expected attendance of a few hundred. Now, the average attendance is in the thousands.

“We wanted to provide teachers an opportunity for professional development, but we thought it would be fun to have panels that would also work well if teachers and students watched together,” member of NTTBF’s communications team Sylvia Leal said. “It also allowed us to host our largest author lineup yet, with nearly 100 authors participating.”

The event began as a closer alternative for North Texas fans to Austin Texas Book Festival, but now has become an yearly tradition.

“The book festival is important because it helps connect kids with the idea that authors are real and that there are new, exciting books coming out,” English teacher Kaysi Sheehan said. “Books don’t have to be old, classic things. It can also help inspire future authors and writers who look at these people and think, ‘That could be me someday.’”

Leal said that all hands are on deck to get the festival out in time. She has stayed at the convention center for three days to complete it.

“It has been pretty stressful getting all of this set up in time, but it will be worth it to see everyone happy and learn more,” Leal said. “Usually, we have it finished before, but since this is the 10th anniversary, we are trying to make it special for everyone.”

Since it was first held in 2015, the NTTBF has expanded to hold attractions, panels and signings. According to Hinson, they reached their goal, but will continue to expand.

“We’ve accomplished what we set out to do ten years ago,” Hinson said. “We have helped cultivate a love for reading in North Texas, and we have celebrated middle grade and young adult literature with thousands of readers and hundreds of authors over the years. There are always more young readers whom we can connect with authors and other readers. We are happy to continue the mission we set forth a decade ago.”

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About the Contributor
Andrew John
Andrew John, Reporter
Senior Andrew John is a reporter and this is his first year on staff. In his free time, he enjoys cooking, skateboarding and photography.

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