The festival featured different tents based on book genres, a Dungeons and Dragons section, book exchange, Star Wars fight and the Parnassus Books’ Book Truck. Teachers and students looked to increase the popularity of reading and literacy with the festival, which was born from a conversation.
“We were in creative writing one day and just started talking about it and we got really passionate about it and [Jennifer Murray] said, ‘What if we made it happen?’ We all realized we could make it happen,” senior Racheal Jones said. “Reading is really important to us, and we wanted to share what reading could do. It shows it increases intelligence, and if you know how to read, you know how to go throughout life.”
Jones helped start the school’s reading club, which has about 75 members.
“Reading has always been, for me, how I found myself. I wanted to help other people who loved reading find themselves,” she said.
The group reached out to Parnassus Books in Nashville for the event last year since Lebanon did not have its own local bookstore at the time. The group brought Pegasus, its mobile bookstore.
Jones said one aspect she loves about books is the spirit of the book exchange, which featured dozens of books across all genres.
“You can loan it. That’s the main reason I love them. If I had it, it’s so easy to go to someone and say, ‘Hey, I have this. I want you to read it. Take it,’” she said.
The festival also showcased the school’s first literary magazine, Echo. The magazine features 70 pages of literary works and artwork from Lebanon High School students.