Book lovers and aspiring authors should mark their calendars for Nov. 21-23, when the Bluffton Book Festival will return for its fourth year.
The festival celebrates local and national authors with a variety of events around Bluffton and Hilton Head Island. There will be workshops, lectures, a cooking demonstration with a local celebrity, an evening of mystery and mystique with bestselling authors, and a family-friendly street festival.
"If you are a lover of the written word, we are offering more than 50 authors and books for you to choose from," Bluffton Book Festival founder Rockelle Henderson said.
The goal of the festival is to increase literacy levels in the Southeast by raising money for two nonprofits, The Literacy Center and The Book Industry Charitable Foundation.
"It supports the local literacy center but also the book industry nationally," Henderson said. "So your purchases at this event actually go toward a great cause."
A Featured Author Event: Masquerade & Mystery Under the Moonlight will give participants a chance to meet and dine with authors. This event will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. Nov. 22 at Oak Terrace at Rose Hill and will feature a three-course meal, a Q&A session and a book signing. Guests are encouraged to wear "Southern charm" attire or dress as their favorite book characters. Prizes will be awarded. Tickets are $135 each.
Local celebrity chef Sallie Ann Robinson will give a cooking demonstration and tasting from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Nov. 21 at Billy Wood Appliance in Bluffton. Tickets are $49 each. Robinson will include recipes from her new cookbook, "Sallie Ann Robinson's Kitchen: Food and Family Lore from the Lowcountry."
The three-day festival will wrap up with a street festival from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 23 on Calhoun Street between Lawton and Green streets. The street festival will include author readings and signings, author panels and interviews, music, food, giveaways and a Children's Nook.
At the street festival, children can meet New York Times bestselling author and illustrator James Dean between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Seating is limited so Henderson recommends guests arrive by 10 a.m. to purchase a copy of Dean's new book, "Pete the Cat and the Perfect Pizza Party," which will serve as a ticket into the event.
For more information about the book festival, visit blufftonbookfestival.com.
Amy Coyne Bredeson of Bluffton is a freelance writer, a mother of two and a volunteer with the Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance.