If you have children in your family, or if you’re bringing a student group to the Festival on April 8, you’re going to love our children’s space, which offers young readers a day of literary fun. You can also read our 2016 Parents’ Guide published in The Rivard Report.
Where to Find the Fun
In 2016 we moved the Holt Family Children’s Reading Tent from its previous location in the Central Library Plaza to the Southwest School of Art’s beautiful and intimate McNutt Gardens. (Find the children’s section on the Festival map.) This new location was a sensational hit; it offered protection against muddy grounds as well as an enclosed space for parents and chaperones to spend the day with their young readers.
Middle-grade kids will once again be in the Copper Kitchen of the Southwest School of Art. Children can listen to an author presentation in the Copper Kitchen then walk over to the McNutt Gardens for activities and other entertainment. These venues, combined with Geektown for teens along Augusta and Giraud Streets, form a triangle of entertainment for families bringing kids of all ages to the Book Festival.
Author Presentations & More!
Each year SABF draws some of the nation’s best children’s authors and illustrators to San Antonio. Browse our 2017 Authors page to see our most recent lineup. You can search by category to see only the authors presenting in the Holt Family Children’s Reading Tent or in the Copper Kitchen.
In addition to author presentations, The Magik Theatre will once again perform on the Holt Family stage; they are planning a captivating performance of “The Three Little Pigs.”
Lunch Time Options
We will place food trucks on the southwest side of the Festival grounds for parents and nonprofits with kids to have easy access to food during lunch time. The Frost Garden of the Southwest School of Art has been designated as a dining spot during the Festival, but there is seating throughout the SSA grounds. Additionally, the remaining food trucks will be located inside the Festival Marketplace.
Activities to Entertain the Kids
The fun doesn’t end with the sessions on the schedule. There will be a number of activities throughout the day–organized and carried out by beloved San Antonio organizations. Entertain your kids with these activities:
- Create your own Japanese marbled stationery with ARTWORKS
- Fun, hands-on activities with the DOSEUM, San Antonio’s museum for kids
- Create dot art with the SAN ANTONIO MUSEUM OF ART
- Tour the mini museum with SPAREPARTS STUDIO
- Create a pop-up book with the SOUTHWEST SCHOOL OF ART
- Meet your favorite literary characters with BARNES & NOBLE,
- Enjoy a performance of “The Three Little Pigs” by MAGIK THEATRE
- Dance with ballerinas from THE CHILDREN’S BALLET OF SAN ANTONIO
- Snap a photo with super heroes from THE CHAMPIONS OF SAN ANTONIO
- Play bingo with the SAN ANTONIO PUBLIC LIBRARY FOUNDATION
- Get a free book from LITERACY CARAVAN
- Make your own puppet to star in SAN ANTONIO YOUTH LITERACY‘s Puppet Theatre!
- Have fun learning with the MITCHELL LAKE AUDUBON CENTER
- Tour the OLÉ EXPRESS-NEWS HISTORY IN MOTION RV and VIA’s eXplore Learning Lab
Explore the Festival
While it may be easy to spend the entire Festival day in the McNutt Gardens, we encourage you to explore other areas of the Festival grounds that children (and parents) might enjoy. Our Popcorn & a Trailer lounge in the Chihuly area of the library will offer free popcorn and book trailers for viewing!
The Central Market Cooking Tent will feature cooking demonstrations throughout the day. Children and parents might delight in seeing professional chefs execute dishes. Click here for the Cooking Tent schedule.