The Tom Dent Literary Festival will be presented Friday by The African American Resource Center and Dillard University. The festival was established by the library’s African American Resource Center in 1999 as a tribute to the late New Orleans author Thomas Covington Dent.

The purpose is to increase awareness of modern African-American literature, to provide a venue for emerging artists to exhibit their work and to create an interest in reading. Festival events include the presentation “From Congo Square to Jazz Funerals,” by poet Chuck Perkins, at the main library, beginning at 10 a.m. At 6 p.m., an author showcase will be held at Dillard’s Georges Auditorium.

Book Festival kicks off

The New Orleans Book Festival is a celebration of books for readers of all ages. The two-day festival, on Friday and Saturday, includes a family-friendly evening performance and a full day of programming for book lovers ranging from new readers to literary scholars. “Twinkle Twinkle,” the Friday night musical performance, will be on the grounds of the Latter Library beginning at 6:30 p.m.

The daytime festival on Saturday is on the shores of Big Lake at City Park. It will feature readings, panel discussions and an activity area for kids, all centered around books and stories. Thanks to the festival’s special partnerships, every child who attends will receive free books. To ensure that anyone who wants to attend is able, the festival is free, including bus transportation and healthy snacks. See nola bookfest.org for more information.

Alvar branch turns 75

The Alvar Library opened Nov. 7, 1940, and remained in service until it was damaged during Hurricane Katrina, taking in a foot of water. It was closed and renovated, reopening to the community in June 2006. In honor of the Alvar Library’s 75th birthday, there’s a celebration Saturday with something for everyone. From 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., youth activities include a screen-printing workshop by the New Orleans Community Print Shop. Participants will make commemorative Alvar Library T-shirts. Entertainment will be provided by Bamboula 2000.

The celebration for adults and families will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and will include a harp performance, poetry, a letterpress demo where Alvar Library commemorative postcards will be made, storytelling, an illustration workshop, creation of a time capsule to be opened on Alvar’s 100th birthday, a Champagne toast and birthday cake.

Ready to read

The Every Child Ready to Read Workshop series is designed to give parents the tools to help their children engage with books and stories at a young age. Parents and caregivers of children, newborn to age 5, are encouraged to attend the next workshop from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the East New Orleans Regional Library.

Latter branch renovation

The Latter Library is scheduled to be temporarily closed beginning Friday for a final round of renovation work. A scheduled reopening date is set for spring 2016. The Friends of the New Orleans Public Library Book Sale, held in the Latter Library Carriage House, will move temporarily to the Algiers Regional Library beginning Nov. 7, until Latter Library reopens. The Algiers Regional Book Sale hours are 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and Saturday.