FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 20, 2017
Contact: Juan Luis Guzmán, Director
GARY SOTO SET TO HEADLINE FRESNO’S LITERARY FESTIVAL
FRESNO, CA—LitHop, Fresno’s ultimate literary festival, is back and scheduled for Saturday, April 29, 2017 from 2:00pm—8:00pm at various locations in Fresno’s Tower District. The daylong festival welcomes writer Gary Soto as the keynote reader in its second year.
Conceptualized an annual event by Fresno Poet Laureate Lee Herrick, LitHop began in 2016 as a fundraiser for Fresno Arts Council poetry programs. In its inaugural year, over a thousand community members attended one or more of the 39 events that featured over 140 writers from across the country. The event also included a reading by US Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera. This year, the event has expanded to showcase 151 writers across 42 separate readings. Gary Soto will cap the evening off with a 7pm reading at Fresno City College’s OAB-Auditorium. An announcement about the event after party is forthcoming.
“We were excited to see LitHop grow in the number of events and participants that are confirmed for 2017 and we hope this means our audience will increase as well,” says LitHop Director Juan Luis Guzmán. A poet and professor of English at Fresno City College, Guzmán says the event is important for the Fresno’s literary scene and the community at large. “The written word can act as the balm we turn to when we have had too much of the noise and pollution of daily life. LitHop gives us an entire day to unplug and just take in the written word in all its genres. It’s important that this event thrive and live on and it’s important that it continues to happen here in Fresno.”
The day is scheduled to begin at 2pm with a series of 45-minute readings available at the top of the hour, every hour. Audiences will have their choice of readings ranging in theme and genre. Some of the reading titles include: Exploring the Gothic: Four Women on What Haunts Us; Ghost Songs & Border Crossings; Maps, Craters, and Throats: Disrupting Colonial Memory; and Mama Boys, among many more. The event is slated to feature over 150 writers from Fresno and across the United States, including: Mas Masumoto, Lee Herrick, Randa Jarrar, members of Fresno Women Read, Marcelo Hernandez Castillo, Kazumi Chin, Dixie Salazar, Yosimar Reyes, members of the San Joaquin Literary Association, Kenji Lui, Armen Bacon, Analicia Sotelo and more.
All readings will take place in Fresno’s Tower District, including participating venues like Goldstein’s Mortuary and Deli, Teazer’s, Mia Cuppa, Hart’s Haven, and Spectrum Art Gallery. All attendees are directed toward Fresno City College at the end of the day for a final reading by guest headliner Gary Soto. That event is scheduled for 7pm at Fresno City College’s OAB Auditorium. All LitHop events are free to the public. For more information, including venues and reading times, visit the official LitHop website at lithopfresno.wordpress.com and follow LitHop on Facebook and Instagram @lithop17.