Ambassador of Books ~ Book Club Madam ~ Blogger Gal

Friday, August 28, 2009

Come to Baltimore! No, come to DC! What to do?!

Every year Baltimore and DC both hold their Book Festivals on the same weekend. It drives me CRAZY! How is a book lover to decide which to go to?! My decision is easy: I'm only a 20 minute drive from Baltimore and I'm moderating a book club panel there this year ... I think I'll stick with Baltimore, thank you very much.

To help the rest of you make a good decision, here's a quick pros/cons list for the two events:


National Book Festival in DC

Pros

  • it is a one day event (Sept. 26)
  • it's a HUGE event so lots of bloggers will be there
  • lots of big name authors will be there too
  • public transportation is easy to use and inexpensive
  • DC has lots of historical sightseeing and museums
  • a book blogger get-together is planned for that evening (details here)
Cons
  • it's a HUGE event - as in, crushing crowds, very long lines, enormous amount of people everywhere (this is not an event for those who don't like crowds)
  • chances for author interaction are very small - you could wait 2 or more hours just to get a book signed
  • if it rains, you're walking in mud
  • parking is difficult to find and can be expensive


Baltimore Book Festival

Pros

  • it is a three day event (Sept. 25-27)
  • it is not a "big crowd" event - people are definitely attending but not in overwhelming numbers
  • chances for author interaction are very good - crowds are not large and authors usually hang around to chat afterward
  • Baltimore has lots of historical sightseeing and museums
  • if it rains, you're walking on cobblestones not mud
  • parking is moderately priced and very close to the Festival
  • my panel, The Book Club Toolkit, is on 9/26 @ noon
  • a book blogger get-together is being planned for Friday evening (9/25) - we'll go to the YA panels and then who knows what we'll do! (Leave a comment if you'd like to be included.)
Baltimore Book Festival - Cons
  • public transportation is not as extensive as in DC
  • many participating authors are not very well known
  • it is a much smaller scaled event than the DC one
What? You say I'm little biased toward the Baltimore event? REALLY?! I didn't think so ... :)


So what's a blogger to do?!

I've heard from several bloggers that they plan to do the DC event on Saturday and the Baltimore event on Sunday. My plan is to do Baltimore both Friday and early Saturday (then leave for a beach weekend late Saturday afternoon). Trish from Hey Lady! will be with me on Friday night and she's also one of my panelists on Saturday. At this point I have no idea what other local and visiting bloggers are doing. If you are going to be at either of these Festivals please let me know your plans in the comments.

Everyone is invited to the Baltimore get-together on Friday night, especially those of you who are planning to be in DC on Saturday - I'd love to get a big group together so we can meet each other!


Complete details about the Festivals can be found at the following websites:

DC: http://www.loc.gov/bookfest/

Baltimore: http://www.baltimorebookfestival.com/index.cfm


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9 comments:

bermudaonion said...

I'd like to clone myself for that weekend. I won't be coming to either because there's a book trade show in my neck of the woods the same weekend.

Anna said...

I really wish they would hold them on different weekends. Weren't they the same weekend last year, too?

--Anna
Diary of an Eccentric

Serena said...

They seem to be on the same weekend every year.

I'll be in D.C. tomorrow and on Sunday I should be at Baltimore Book Festival with Anna.

I dunno about Friday yet...I'll keep you posted.

Heather J. said...

bermuda - cloning would solve this problem for sure!

Anna - yes, they are ALWAYS on the same weekend. :(

Serena - um, you don't mean TOMORROW tomorrow, do you?

Serena said...

no i didnt mean tomorrow tomorrow...sorry its been a crazy day at the "office"

Amy said...

I still haven't booked my ticket! I should just take the plunge though, right? :)

I of course want to meet you! We can chat LOST and bore everyone around us! :)

trish said...

I'm really excited! It's nice to meet big name authors, with the National Book Festival has, but you rarely get to connect with them, and I prefer connecting with an author over meeting someone who has a bunch of bestsellers. :)

Heather J. said...

Serena - I figured as much. :)

Amy - I didn't know you were even THINKING about coming - woohoo!!!

Trish - My thoughts exactly.

softdrink said...

I wish! I think next year I need to plan my vacations around book festivals. :-)

I hope everyone has a wonderful time!

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