Edgar Awards, Ken Burns Classroom Q&A, and More | News Bites

Awards, a grant opportunity, and the chance for students to ask Ken Burns about the Vietnam War.

Jason Reynolds's Long Way Down earns another honor, documentary filmmaker Ken Burns is ready to take questions from students, and libraries can apply for grants for Banned Books Week programs.

Ponti, Reynolds win 2018 Edgars

The Mystery Writers of America announced the winners of the 2018 Edgar Allan Poe Awards, which honor the best in mystery fiction, nonfiction, and television that was published or produced in 2017.

The Best Juvenile novel (hardbound or paperback; preschool to 7th grade—ages 5–12—but not including YA): Vanished! by James Ponti.

Best Young Adult novel (hardbound or paperback; 8th–12th grades—ages 13–18): Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds.


Vietnam Classroom Q&A with Ken Burns

Photo courtesy of Tim Llewellyn

PBS Education is presenting a live, interactive streaming event with filmmaker Ken Burns, director of the PBS documentary, The Vietnam War. The classroom Q&A for middle and high school students will allow participants to ask Burns questions about the Vietnam War.  Registration is required for the event, which is Tuesday, May 1, from 12:30–1:30 p.m. ET. Burns has spent nearly 40 years making documentaries, including The Civil War, Baseball, and Jazz. His most recent film, The Vietnam War, is a 10-part, 18-hour series that aired on PBS in September 2017.

Joliet (IL) Public Library Wins Programming Award

The American Library Association's (ALA) 2018 Excellence in Library Programming Award winner is the Joliet (IL) Public Library for its Star Wars Day program. The award, supported by ALA’s Cultural Communities Fund, "recognizes a library that demonstrates excellence by providing programs that have community impact and respond to community needs." Started in 2010, Joliet's Star Wars Day is a Disney-approved event that features authors, artists, a parade of costumed characters, live music, prize giveaways, games, food vendors, exhibitors, movie props, and more. It has become a mini Star Wars convention, attracting more than 10,000 visitors. This year's Stars Wars Day is June 2.

Banned Books Week Grants

Public, school, and universities libraries can apply for the Freedom to Read Foundation's Judith Krug Fund grants to support activities that raise awareness of intellectual freedom and censorship issues during Banned Books Week. In addition to the grant (distributed at two levels: $1,000 and $2,500), winners receive an American Library Association 2018 Banned Books Week PromoKit, which includes a poster, stickers,  the “2017 Field Report: Banned and Challenged Books,” bookmarks, and one tote bag. This year, Banned Books Week is September 23–29. Grantees must produce a follow-up report with expenditures, numbers of participants, press coverage, and a explanation of the event within six weeks of Banned Books Week. The grant application deadline is Friday, May 11. Last year, seven grants were awarded.

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