tots-9_fred-photo_fb-bannerIconic Canadian musician and entertainer Fred Penner headlines our 9th annual TOTASAPALOOZA festival of indie music, picture book authors, and DIY crafts on Saturday, February 4th, 1-4pm, at Revival nightclub (783 College – at Ossington). Early Bird Tickets are now available (click here).

As befits our nation’s 150th anniversary, this year’s featured authors are also national treasures. Don’t miss:

  • Toronto’s Tyler Clark Burke, launching her debut picture book BILL BOWERBIRD AND THE UNBEARABLE BEAK ACHE (Owlkids Books).
  • Montreal’s Elise Gravel, sharing her latest works I WANT A MONSTER! and THE CRANKY BALLERINA (HarperCollins Canada).
  • And local wordsmith Andrew Larsen, inspiring storytellers of all ages with A SQUIGGLY STORY (KidsCan Press).

Audience favourites The Movement Lab children’s dance studio will be back to keep the crowd on their toes. And Kensington Market mainstay Wanda’s Pie-in-the-Sky will fuel partygoers of all ages with healthy, handmade snacks from their pop-up bakery.

Books will be available for purchase and signing at the event.

TOTSAPALOOZA sells out – every. single. year. Avoid disappointment. Get your Early Bird Tickets now (and save 25% off the regular price): click here

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Our Roald Dahl Party of the Centenary

a_-a-_rdd-7-montageA record number of Roald Dahl fans helped us celebrate the 100th anniversary of the legendary children’s author’s birth on November 12, as part of our 7th annual Toronto Dahl Day at the Ted Rogers Hot Docs Cinema.

Dahl fans created masks in honour of The Fantastic Mr Fox and ‘Do Not Disturb’ door signs featuring Oompa Loompas from Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. Our annual Roald Dahl Day Short Story Contest generated an inordinate number of first-rate stories, which made our all-star judging panel’s extremely difficult.

Dory Cerny, Books for Young People Editor at Quill and Quire (pictured above) read the Grand-Prize winning tale by Alice Trevett (pictured above, receiving her prize from Jenn Hubbs).  The crowd then watched the late great Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka in a special screening of the 1971 classic, Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory.

At Roald Dahl Day celebrations around the world, people were asked to vote in a poll, ‘Who’s the Pluckiest Protagonist and The Vilest Villain of them all?’ Toronto readers choose Willy Wonka as the former and Veruca Salt  (insert, above, from Quentin Blake‘s illustrations for Charlie) as Dahl’s vilest villain.

For more of Jenn Catanzaro‘s photos of Roald Dahl Day, visit our Facebook page (here).

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John Sobol Helps Cats Land in Mouse City

montage_mouse-city_john-sobolJohn Sobol (above) launched FRIEND OR FOE as part of a special edition of Mouse City, our model city-building project for kids aged 2-8, at Lillian H. Smith Library on October 22.  As Mayor of Mouse City, John helped his new feline citizens get settled.The young urban planners decided that cats and mice are “friends,” as opposed to “foes.

For more of Shana Hillman and Caroline Young’s event photos, visit our Facebook page (here).

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Introducing Our First-Ever Crowdfunding Drive

fundrazr-fb-bannerWe are committed to running FREE programs that inspire kids to tell their own stories. And our programming opportunities continue to expand. Being a volunteer-driven, non-profit organization, however, our resources are limited.

To keep our literary programs for kids accessible to families of all kinds, we’re running our first-ever crowdfunding drive. By contributing roughly the price of a picture book, you can enable us to offer FREE monthly programs across the GTA for a year. Thanks, in advance!

To support accessible literary programs for Toronto kids, click here.

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