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Raise a toast to the Las Vegas Valley Book Festival

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Illustration: Wes Gatbonton

We see that you’ve reached 10 years, Vegas Valley Book Festival. Congratulations, and thank you. Thanks for hosting a literary event in a community that’s often shrugged off by the rest of the world as culturally deprived. You place our creative and intellectual might on a pedestal, remind us who we are and inspire us.

It’s been a great ride, and we’ve grown up with you. There was that windy weekend back at the Henderson Pavilion when we lined up to have our books signed on a chilly day. And the poetry bus tour that plopped us into diverse galleries on First Friday. And that night when Sarah Vowell made us all laugh out of our seats. And who knew former U.S. poet laureate Kay Ryan was so funny?

The list goes on—John Irving, Tom Robbins, Rudolfo Anaya, Walter Mosley, Chuck Palahniuk—600 authors and speakers in all. My personal favorite? The actors’ reading of Salinger’s A Perfect Day for Bananafish at Don’t Tell Mama.

Happy Anniversary.

We look forward to the next 10.

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