Reading five to six books each month for an entire year to select material and authors for the Rocky Mountain Literary Festival is just part of the behind-the-scenes groundwork for the annual book-lovers event.
Book lovers gathered with several authors for a day of presentations, auctions, autographs, socializing and more at the seventh annual festival on October 16 at the Mount Vernon Canyon Club in Golden.
The festival was created and continues to benefit Bootstraps Inc., a local scholarship / loan organization that supports continuing education for students in mountain regions. In six years, the festival has raised $ 34,000 for scholarships.
It starred award-winning bestselling authors Andrea Bobotis, Pam Houston, David Treuer, Carter Wilson, and Melanie Crowder from Today’s USA, The New York Times and more.
Nancy Heister, Director of Development for Bootstraps, has attended six RMLF events, calling them “a great gathering of people who really love to read.”
This year’s event hosted around 150 people in person and a virtual audience of around 30 people.
“People are hungry to get together in person,” Heister said, especially after last year’s event was completely virtual.
Bobotis gave a presentation on her recent novel, “The Last Miss Judith Kratt List”. She began by asking the audience to imagine something important to them and explained how starting to write about objects ultimately led her to reconnect with her southern roots.
“I grew up in a southern house full of family heirlooms,” she said.
Evergreen’s Tanya Kaanta was one of the first organizers of the event in 2015. This year, she hosted one of the authors.
“(I am) here to celebrate these amazing authors,” she said. “The aim is to help high school students with their education.”
Susan Henry attended the first RMLF event as Chair of Bootstraps, but this year she attended as Executive Director. She called the festival important to the community.
“It’s an opportunity for people who love to read to come together,” she said.