Kate DiCamillo's Visit to Skokie
April 2003

Whoa! What an exciting day for Skokie students and Library visitors! The Youth Services Department was privileged and pleased to host a visit from Kate DiCamillo, our first Voice of Youth Award winning author. Kate was selected by young Library patrons and students at nine schools to receive the 2002 VOYA award for her Newbery Honor book, Because of Winn Dixie.

Kate spent the morning and afternoon talking with students at Highland and Hillel Torah Schools about writing and the joy of a good story. In between, Kate enjoyed lunch with Skokie Public Library staff and two very special visitors: Rachel H. from Highland School and Ashley B. from Hillel Torah School, whose VOYA ballots were selected by raffle for an invitation to have lunch with Kate.

Later that evening, more than two hundred adults and children gathered in the Library’s Petty Auditorium for an evening filled with stories about Kate’s passion for writing, the "ups and downs" of being an author, and the story behind the story of Because of Winn Dixie. At the end of the evening, Kate received two surprises: a jar of pickles from an admirer and a visit from Chris Sheban, the illustrator who drew the cover pictures for Because of Winn Dixie!

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Highland School second graders
welcome Kate to their school
 

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Kate reads to Highland School students from her book, Because of Winn Dixie
 

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Highland School students ask and answer questions about Because of Winn Dixie
 

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Kate with Ashley B. (right) and Hillel Torah librarian Carol Rosen.

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Hillel Torah third and fourth grade
students talk with Kate about
Because of Winn Dixie

 
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Kate visits with Library Director
Carolyn Anthony (left), Highland School librarian Gail Bernero, and Rachel H.
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Kate and Jan Watkins, Skokie Public Library's Head of Youth Services
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Kate and illustrator Chris Sheban (center) take a break with Library staff
 
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What's a party without cake?
This one is decorated to look like
the cover of Kate's book!