We always look forward to the National Book Festival, but we’ve been particularly excited this year. Not only would Owen be attending for the first time as a full-fledged reader, but the author of his favorite book series was going to be there. Yes, the Mary Pope Osborne, creator of the wildly popular Magic Treehouse books, would be among the many celebrated authors at the Festival presenting and talking about their craft.
The best part: We had the wonderful opportunity to meet her and do a little interview. And since Owen has become a big Magic Treehouse enthusiast, he got to do the asking. (Though I have become a fan myself, my starstruck-ness revealing itself in utterances of “wow!”, “neat!”, and “cool!” during the video.) The clip is a little hard to hear because it was loud at the festival, so turn up the volume (it’s completely SFW).
A pretty good first interview for a six-year-old, in my totally biased opinion. And what a thrill to speak with Osborne and hear her present later on. As she addressed the huge crowd in the Children’s Pavilion, she connected her latest book, “A Perfect Time for Pandas” to the birth of the panda cub at the National Zoo, stressed the importance of reading, and took an informal poll of what her next book should be about: Catherine the Great, World Cup soccer, hippos, or Mayans (if it were up to Owen, we’d be getting a story about Pele, but we’ll be interested to see how that pans out).
In between Osborne encounters, the kids enjoyed activities in the PBS Kids and Let’s Read America Pavilions, including a reading of “The Wonderful Book” by the Wells Fargo Stagecoach.
To add to the delights of the day, we also caught the end of Jewel’s presentation — she just published her first children’s book — and got to hear her yodel. (Yes, yodel!) Have a listen – it was fantastic.