Paper Plains Literary Festival boasts ‘world’s first’ book club parade among event lineup

photo by: Contributed image

Local designer Iris Cliff created the logo for “The Paper Plains Literary Festival," while the name came from the brainstorming of Meredith Moore and Paul DeGeorge, owners of Wonder Fair.

The world’s first book club parade will take place in Lawrence next month as part of the Paper Plains Literary Festival, event organizers say.

Will it truly be the “world’s first” book club parade? Paper Plains festival director Danny Caine believes so. An “educated guess” and Google search led him to believe this quirky event — designed for book club members — would be the first of its kind in the world and certainly in Lawrence.

“If you would tell me to guess where the world’s first book club parade would happen my first guess would be Lawrence, Kansas,” said Caine, owner of the Raven Book Store.

The sidewalk parade will take place on Saturday, April 25, from 10 to 11 a.m. Attendees will meet at the South Park Gazebo at 9:45 a.m. and walk up Massachusetts Street, then over to the Lawrence Public Library at 707 Vermont St., where they can stay and attend an author presentation that begins at 11.

“It’s going to be a party,” Caine said. Celebrating literature doesn’t have to look like “people sitting with their legs crossed in a Victorian-themed parlor,” he said.

The Mardi Gras brass band has been hired for the parade, Caine said, and Paper Plains board chair Sarah Bishop said she hoped attendees would dress up.

“I think the Bluestockings need to come out in blue tights!” she said of her own book club, the Bluestockings.

The book club parade is one of a few nontraditional events in the literary festival. There will also be a bookstore crawl in the afternoon on April 25 and book club speed dating in the afternoon on April 26. The bookstore crawl will include stops at Signs of Life, The Dusty Bookshelf and The Raven Book Store, and talks with booksellers about each store’s history. The speed dating event will highlight new and popular books for book clubs seeking fresh reads.

The Paper Plains Literary Festival also recently announced its full lineup of authors. They include Colson Whitehead, Natalie Diaz, Sarah Smarsh, Julie Murphy, Grady Hendrix, Ed Skoog, Erika Meitner, Philip Metres, Traci Brimhall, David Allen Sibley, Kevin Coval, Idris Goodwin, Justina Ireland, Adib Khorram, Natalie C. Parker, Tessa Gratton, Sarah Henning, Amanda Sellet, Deb Olin Unferth, Bridget Lowe, Jenny Molberg, Grant Snider, Dan Flores, Tom Clavin and Niki Smith.

The festival will take place April 23-26, and all events are free. A full schedule of events is available at the festival’s website,

Related story

Sept. 19, 2019 — Colson Whitehead, Natalie Diaz to headline Paper Plains Literary Festival in Lawrence


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