Young Authors conference on tap


April 21, 2010 - 12:00 AM

When Allen County holds its 11th Young Authors celebration this weekend, on hand will be two noteworthy women.
Betsy Lewin is a Caldecott honor-winning illustrator best known for her whimsical barnyard brood in Doreen Cronin’s “Click, Clack, Moo” books.
Mary Casanova is an author who writes predominantly young adult books. She is known for her “Dog Watch” series, plus two books in the American Girl series, “Chrissa” and “Chrissa Stands Strong,” which were made into a movie for HBO.
On Friday, Lewin and Casanova will give presentations at McKinley, Lincoln, Jefferson, Humboldt and Marmaton Valley elementary schools.
Iola Middle School chose not to participate in the book-writing contest this year, said Young Authors committee chair Deb Greenwall, although three IMS students decided to write books for the event anyway.
They will be honored with medals Friday morning for their participation.
Overall, 69 percent of all elementary students in Allen County took part in this year’s contest, Greenwall said.
At McKinley Elementary, participation reached 99 percent.
“It’s really a wonderful thing when teachers go the extra mile to have their students be part of this,” Greenwall said.
Altogether, 573 books were submitted to the contest this year.
Committees selected 35 winners from each school to meet with Lewin and Casanova at special workshops Saturday.
The annual celebration is funded by the Sleeper Family Trust.
Since it began, 8,558 stories have been written by Allen County elementary and middle school students.

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