Celebrate the joys of reading with Canada’s most popular children’s literary festival, Forest of Reading® Festival of Trees™

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Toronto (April 29, 2014) – Where else but at Forest of Reading® Festival of Trees™ can you see authors celebrated like rock stars? Nowhere! The stages are set and the young readers are sure to go crazy for all the nominees at Canada’s largest literary festival for children, which takes place May 14 and 15, 2014. Programme partners the Ontario Library Association (OLA) and IFOA look forward to welcoming thousands of children to the Harbourfront Centre site to take part in a variety of activities honouring the shared experience of reading. They are also delighted to announce that for the first time, the French Forest of Reading® awards will be celebrated with their own French Festival, which will include French hosts, performers and workshops on the east side of the site.

The winners from this year’s nine Forest of Reading® award categories will be unveiled at dedicated ceremonies during the two-day festival. The award categories include: Blue Spruce™ (JK–Grade 2), Silver Birch® Express (Grade 3–4), Silver Birch® Fiction (Grade 3–6), Silver Birch® Non-Fiction (Grade 3–6), Red Maple™ Fiction (Grade 7–8), Le prix Peuplier (French-language, Kindergarten–Grade 2), Le prix Tamarac (French-language, Grade 4–6), Le prix Tamarac Express (French-language, Grade 4–6) and White Pine™ Fiction (Grade 9–12).

Also included in the Festival of Trees™ ticket price is a chance to meet any of the eight authors participating in ALOUD: a Celebration for Young Readers, which runs in partnership with Forest of Reading®. This year, ALOUD features seven workshops that will provide a unique opportunity for young readers to engage with their favourite writers. On May 14, authors K.L. Armstrong and M.A. Marr (Loki’s Wolves: The Blackwell Pages) talk monsters and culture, author Jill MacLean leads a workshop focused on her young adult novel Nix Minus One and Colleen Nelson (The Fall) offers tips on how to become a better writer. On May 15, author Robin Stevenson (Record Breaker) takes kids through a brainstorming session, writer Cary Fagan (Danny, Who Fell in a Hole) shares where his ideas come from, Claire Eamer (The World in Your Lunch Box) talks about the surprising stories behind ordinary things and Pat Bourke (Yesterday’s Dead) teaches kids how to use historical photos as story starters.

May 14: Activities complementing the Blue Spruce™, Red Maple™ and White Pine™ awards include a workshop with popular authors of the Seven series Eric Walters, Sigmund Brouwer and Ted Staunton, as well as workshops with writers Alma Fullerton (A Good Trade) and David A. Poulsen (Old Man). The day also features an appearance by Kim Cooper, editor of OWL Magazine, who will host the Blue Spruce™ award ceremony.

May 15: Flip TFO personalities Alex and Meilie will host the ceremonies for Le prix Tamarac and Le prix Tamarac Express. Josée and Lou from MiniTFO will host the ceremony for Le prix Peuplier. Activities complementing these awards include French-language workshops by Eric Péladeau (Martine et Maurice), Carole Tremblay (Mon serpent est gentil mais…tellement disparu!), Michel Noël (Le Livre du manuscrit à la librairie) and others. A host of exciting workshops—including ones led by Gordon Korman (The Hypnotists), Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch (One Step at a Time: A Vietnamese Child Finds Her Way) and Rebecca Upjohn (The Secret of the Village Fool)—complement the Silver Birch® awards. Other special features of the day include appearances by TVOKids personalities Cassius and Melissa, who will host the Silver Birch® ceremonies, and a cartooning duel between illustrators Kevin Sylvester and Alan Silberberg.

Roaming entertainment by magicians and circus performers, book-making workshops, canoe rides, games, tattoo stations and an online photo scavenger hunt will add to the festivities over the two days.

S&B Books Ltd. is the official wholesaler of Forest of Reading®. Books by all of the participating authors will be available for purchase on site, as well as other Forest® merchandise.

All events and activities are located at Harbourfront Centre (235 Queens Quay West, Toronto) and take place between 10am and 2pm. For more information and to purchase tickets, the public may visit ifoa.org or call 416-973-4000.


The Ontario Library Association (OLA) creates programmes, advocacy and promotion for its more than 5,000 members who work in primary and secondary schools, colleges, universities and public libraries across Ontario. The mission of the OLA is to foster free public access to information, and to promote Canada’s history and culture through the programmes and services of the libraries of Ontario.

Since its inception in 1974, IFOA has hosted over 8,500 authors from more than 100 countries, including 21 Nobel Laureates. Our season runs from September to June and includes the annual International Festival of Authors (October 23 to November 2, 2014), including YoungIFOA and IFOA Ontario, and the annual ALOUD: a Celebration for Young Readers with Forest of Reading® Festival of Trees™ (May 14–15, 2014).

Maeve O’Regan: moregan@ifoa.org; 416-973-5836
Meghan Gribben: mgribben@ifoa.org; 416-973-4395