Young Readers Conference to feature nationally reowned authors and illustrators

Six nationally known authors and illustrators will be featured at the 2004 Young Readers' Conference from 8:30 a.m.-3:10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Oct. 22 and 23, in Beach/Schmidt Performing Arts Center, Fort Hays State University.

Authors and illustrators attending the conference will be Bill Wallace, author of "A Dog Called Kitty," "Beauty," and "Red Dog"; Carol Wallace, author of "Bub Moose"; poet David Greenberg, author of "Bugs!," "Skunks!" and "Slugs!"; Debra Seely, author of "Grasslands"; Jerri Garretson, author of "Imagicat"; and Alexandra Wallner, illustrator of "A Christmas Tree in the White House."

More than 600 third- through sixth-grade students are expected to visit with the authors during the two-day conference.

" So far, Friday is full and Saturday is filling up quickly too. I think maybe Friday, out of the 300 possible spots, we maybe have three spots open," said Beth Walizer, instructor of teacher education.

Aside from listening to and visiting with the authors, the students will write letters of introduction. The winner of the contest will introduce one of the authors.

Sponsors of the Young Readers' Conference include R.P. Nixon Operations Inc., Russell County Treasurer-Sheriff Drug Fund, Rick's Pipe Testing-Gary Meis, High Plains Reading Council, Fort Hays State University Reading Service Center, Main Street Securities LLC, and Dane G. Hansen Foundation.

" For children to have the opportunity to visit with an author or illustrator and find out what they do and get them turned on to the excitement of reading is just so amazing," Walizer said. "What better way to do all of that than through this conference."

" We are really looking forward to all of the children and their sponsors attending and listening to the authors," she continued. "It should be a lot of fun."

For more information on the conference, contact Walizer at (785) 628-5579 or by e-mail at, or Dr. Sue Jacobs, assistant professor of teacher education at (785) 628-5852 or by e-mail at

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