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William Allen White Award Celebration Focuses on Books, Children

October 3, 2019

Students and educators from across Kansas will celebrate children’s literature during the 67th annual William Allen White Children’s Book Awards on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019, at Emporia State University. The events are open to the public.

Authors Sara Pennypacker and Jason Reynolds will be guests of honor for the book awards during a day that culminates in receiving their awards. Pennypacker wrote “Pax,” selected by Kansas schoolchildren in Grades 3 through 5. Reynolds wrote “Ghost,” selected by voters in Grades 6 through 8.

Free events on Saturday kick off bright and early at 7:30 a.m. in Emporia State University’s Memorial Union. From 7:30 to 10:30 a.m., copies of the books and souvenirs of the celebration will be sold by the Memorial Union Bookstore, and both authors will be available to sign the books.

Also from 7:30 to 10:30 a.m., children’s activities will be available including writing letters to authors, silly science, zoo docents and craft projects.  

The awards ceremony begins at 11:30 a.m. in Webb Hall on the second floor of the Memorial Union. Tickets cost $5 and are available at the door.

All participants should enter the east side of the Memorial Union. Ambassadors will direct everyone to activities from there.

The William Allen White Children’s Book Award program began after the famed journalist’s death on Jan. 29, 1944 — Kansas Day — when two memorial foundations were created in his name. Emporia State University launched the William Allen White Children’s Book Award, which was guided by Ruth Garver Gagliardo, who was hired by White to write for The Emporia Gazette.




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