This year there were over 1,000 volunteers making sure everything ran smoothly and there was still room for more. In addition to the volunteers making everything as perfect as possible, there were the booksellers, vendors and retail shops spread out around the square to help occupy your day.
Then of course there were the people you were coming to see - over 600 authors were in attendance, presenting their books, discussing publishing in today's world, signing and chatting with fans.
It was an extremely upbeat, uplifting and enlightening 2-1/2 days.
In addition to the events and authors, the weather cooperated and not one unruly thunderstorm came near us. The theme this year was to Read Different - in other words, read something you normally wouldn't. This theme played throughout the entire festival with a broad range of authors ranging in topics from children's books to history, cooking, sci-fi, race relations, feminism, romance, suspense and much more.
|Philip Rafshoon and Daren Wang*|
If you didn't go to all the events there was more than enough to entertain yourself with booths ranging from books, more books, things to decorate books with, things to read books with, and did I mention books? (There was an odd storm window/insulation booth there that I'm pretty sure got lost on it's way to a home expo.) Many of the booths had a wonderful variety of books being sold by actual publishing houses and several of them had their authors popping in to shake your hand and take pictures. Additionally there were other booths offering great deals such as 10 books for $10.00.
If you wanted a tiny break from books, the surrounding Decatur square retail shops had a lovely assortment of goodies to take home... with your books.
There was a huge variety of food options available - from the casual yet upscale dining restaurants on the square to some delightful food and beer booths. Great places to rest, eat, plan your next event........and read your books.
Parking was ample and safe and there were enough porta-potties for all. All together a great event with plenty of resources for the 90,000 people that they are estimating showed up.
This was my 5th year at the festival, I was in the crowd the entire time and enjoyed myself immensely. I wrote next year down in my calendar already! (Hope I see you there!)
*Philip Rafshoon, AJC DBF Programming Director and Daren Wang, Executor Director DBF