I have never attended the D.C. festival, but I am happy to say that I've been able to attend the Austin festival about a dozen years now - and I'm looking forward to this twentieth one.
Anyway, back to the email. Here are just a few statistics from the email to show what has been accomplished by the festival in the last two decades:
- 1,033 grants totaling more than $2.7 million have been made to something over 600 libraries
- 3,472 authors have participated in the festivals and made themselves available to their fans
- 273 authors have offered their time to visit some 72 different Texas public schools
- 64,127 books have been donated (through the Reading Rock Stars program) to disadvantaged children
On top of things that can be measured in hard numbers, like those shown above, the Texas Reading Festival has encouraged a love of books and reading in people of all ages. The state is truly blessed to have such a well run book festival each year, something only made possible by the thousands of volunteers who make it work so well.
And special thanks have to go to former librarian, Laura Bush. Thank you, Laura.