The year’s lineup of award winning, bestselling and memorable authors, both local and from far off places is dazzling! Whether you enjoy biographies, fiction, non-fiction, mysteries, sci-fi, a wide assortment of genre is all here for you to explore, enjoy and buy.
The Festival offers FREE events all day Saturday. All EXTRAVAGANZA authors’ breakout sessions, TEEN FEST and KIDZ FUN ZONE activities are open to the public and free.
VYSTAR READERS LUNCHEON
Vystar’s Readers Luncheon with Keynote Speaker Carolyn Curry will also be held Saturday at the Woman’s Club, located directly behind the Atlantic Recreation Center, from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm.
Tickets are $25.00 for members and $35.00 for non-members.
Book lovers will not want to miss Curry’s moving talk on faith, hope and courage. Curry is the author of Suffer and Grow Strong, the Life of Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas ( 1834-1907). Her husband Bill Curry will introduce Carolyn.
This is an intimate story of devastating loss and ultimate triumph. Carolyn Curry brings to life the perseverance and metamorphosis of a real life Scarlett O’Hara in the story of Ella “Gertrude” Clanton Thomas. This intelligent, spirited woman was born in 1834 to one of the wealthiest families in Georgia. Thomas began keeping a diary at age 14 and her accounts of life before, during, and after the Civil War filled 13 volumes with 450,000 words. The war and its aftermath changed her life forever. She experienced poverty, illness, and devastating family strife. She saw four of her 10 children die. She grew to question the “peculiar institution” upon which the antebellum South was built. Through it all, Thomas poured her thoughts into her diary and persevered. In her later years, she became a human rights activist.
Authors will enlighten and entertain throughout the day and the winner of the TEEN FEST writing contest will be announced. This year’s expanded offerings include Kevin Emerson, musician, songwriter, educator, and author, has been writing since he was in elementary school, designing his own unique endings to movies and books. Today he is widely known by young readers as the author of Carlos Gonna Get It, The Atlanteans Trilogy, The Fellowship for Alien Detections, the Lost Code Series, and the Oliver Nocturne Series. He currently works for a nonprofit organization in Seattle, which empowers students to excel academically and write extensively.
Lead singer for the band, Central Services’ Board of Education, his songs are widely heard on college radio stations. He has recently released an album with the same name as his band. He has been interviewed on National Public Radio, has appeared in many schools across the country, and is a much sought after inspiration for young writers and readers.
Charles Benoit, a saxophone player and award-winning author, has published three youth thrillers: You, Fall from Grace and his latest, Cold Call. In his new book he explores the importance of keeping your secrets safe and how anyone can be bullied or be a bully. The fast-paced story is a riveting tale about three teens from different high schools dealing with real life issues.
Benoit, who works as a senior copywriter and producer for a marketing, advertising, and public relations firm, also frequently teaches creative writing workshops around the country. Benoit has taught high school social studies in the Rochester City School District, where he and his wife, currently live, and at international schools in Kuwait, Trinidad and Tobago. His music, writing and engaging presentation talents are sure to regale.
Terri Dean, Ph.D., is a dynamic speaker, and well-known local clinical psychologist. Her new book, Traveling Stories, Lessons from the Journey of Life, is drawn from personal adventures with people, travels, and work. Her engaging writing style will inspire young authors to use their own lives as meaningful springboards for writing.
Be inspired, entertained and enriched. Attend TEEN FEST!
KIDZ FUN ZONE
Saturday, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, also brings the Kidz Fun Zone to the Rec Center. Again, there in no admission fee to enter this special place full of fun activities for children of all ages and is designed to encourage the love of reading and celebrating books. Collaborating with the Festival is The Friends of the Library, offering crafts, author readings, storytelling and other special projects through the day.
UP-CLOSE AND PERSONAL WITH BILL CURRY
Saturday evening, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm, at the Fernandina Beach Golf Course Club is Up-close and Personal with Bill Curry.
This is a unique opportunity to get up close and personal with Bill Curry, NFL player, coach, and author of the highly acclaimed Ten Men You Meet in the Huddle: Lessons from a Football Life. Bill Curry has spent his entire adult life as a communicator and leader.
His NFL career included two Super Bowl titles, and he served as head football coach for Georgia Tech (’80-’86), the University of Alabama (’87-’89), and the University of Kentucky (’90-’96). In 1989, he received the Bobby Dodd National Coach of the Year Award. With awards too numerous to mention, Curry now helps motivate businesses, sports and organizations with his inspiring style.
The two-time Super Bowl winner, turned Georgia Tech and Alabama Coach, turned ESPN announcer turned motivational speaker and author will awe and inspire you.
“Bill Curry’s life is more than a football life. In reality, Curry is a humanitarian, scribe, ESPN analyst, an inspirational speaker on the dais and an engaging man about town who at the age of 65 has decided to build a first-ever football program at Georgia State University. He is the epitome of the Southern gentleman who just happened to enjoy knocking heads on the football field,” wrote one reviewer.
Curry also will be at the VyStar Readers Luncheon to introduce his author wife, Carolyn. She, in turn will be on hand at the early evening reception at the Fernandina Beach Golf Course Club to introduce him.
At this special reception you will not only get to mix and mingle with this fascinating man, but you will be among those few to share as he delivers some of the motivational presentations he gives to organizations.
Hors d’oeuvres and drinks will be served. Tickets are $60.00 for members, and $70.00 for non-members.
Amelia Island Book Festival is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization registered with the State of Florida dedicated to promoting literacy. Donations are tax deductible. Our mission is to support literacy throughout the community and to organize, manage, and produce annual book festival events for all citizens of Nassau County.