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Lakefield Literary Festival gets early start at LDSS

by Ellen Hinan

Lakefield District Secondary & Intermediate School hosted Canadian author Sigmund Brouwer for a two-day Young Adult Lakefield Literary Festival event.

On Wednesday, April 30, students from LDSS, Crestwood SS, East Northumberland SS, Campbellford DHS, St. Peter’s CSS, Thomas A. Stewart S.S and Adam Scott CVI gathered for a Reader’s Retreat.

The Library was filled with laughter as Brouwer’s humour-infused presentation about the art of storytelling and writing kept students captivated.

Mr. Williams’ Hospitality class provided a nutritious lunch for all participants and everyone left with a copy of a great Canadian novel, generously donated by the Literary Festival.

Brouwer stated, “The students were such a great group because as they hit the perfect chords of fun, funniness, and brilliant comments and questions, it seemed just as the workshop started, it was ending.”

Student response to the event was overwhelming. “It was really great. I feel like I learned a lot from it. It was inspiring and motivational. I’m really glad I came. It changed how I thought about a lot of things,” stated Hailey Ghazhevi, T.A.S.S.S.

On Thursday, the intermediate gym rocked along with Sigmund. Students from St. Paul’s Elementary School, Ridpath Junior Public School, Warsaw Public School and Apsley Central Public School joined LDISS for Brouwer’s high-energy presentation.

His Rock and Rock Literacy show inspired and entertained students as the audience learned how to tell a great story.

“It was an amazing experience to hear from an established, published author in such a fun environment,” stated Vanessa Stark, LDSS student. “I learned so much from this making me even more excited for the Literary Festival this year.”

The Royal Bank of Canada sponsored the two-day event and representatives Mike Belliveau and Tracy Utter were on hand to present each school with a bag of Canadian, YA novels, donated by the LLF.

When asked whether she would attend another event like this, Cassandra Kyle, LDSS student, stated, “Yes, for sure! As a visual artist, I am interested in evoking emotion from the viewer and I’ve been interested in being able to do the same with writing. I learned a lot about compelling story writing/telling while learning the key elements to appealing and captivating an audience.”

The two-day event drew over 200 students from 12 schools. The rest of the Lakefield Literary Festival events are taking place in July. Please check the Festival’s website for details.

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