28 Sept 2022

Event Recap: The Word on the Street's Community Pop-Up at Evergreen Brick Works

I spent my Sunday attending The Word on the Street's Community Pop-Up at Evergreen Brick Works! It was such a lovely Sunday to be surrounded by books and community members. And any time I get to go to Evergreen Brick Works, I'm happy!

The Word on the Street's Community Pop-Up at Evergreen Brick Works

About the Event

The Word On The Street Toronto is bringing our festival to your backyard. In this inaugural community pop-up event, we're hosting a mini-WOTS at an internationally-renowned hub of sustainability: Evergreen Brick Works! An abandoned brick-making factory nestled in Toronto's lush ravines, Evergreen Brick Works was transformed into a community hub for all to enjoy.

Enjoy author-led forest walks, a book-filled vendor marketplace, activities for the whole family, Soapbox Science, a featured discussion with environmentalist Maude Barlow, and readings by the finalists for the City of Toronto’s 2022 Toronto Book Awards.

Our community marketplace will include 30+ exhibitors including long-time WOTS favourites such as Annick Press, House of Anansi and Groundwood Books, Brick Books, Coach House Books, ECW Press, Invisible Publishing, Literary Press Group, Stelliform Press, Second Story Press, Wolsak & Wynn, and more. You can also meet some of Toronto’s newest literary shops: Little Ghosts Bookstore, Happily Ever After Books, and Issues Magazine Shop.

My Experience

I really enjoyed the layout of the event - and it was super great to meet the Toronto Word on the Street team! I got to the event right for when it opened at 9 so I could take in the full event and make sure I knew what was available before I spent all my money at the first booth. (I almost did that anyway).

I was lucky to get a media pass, which meant that I got an awesome swag bag filled with stuff from some of the publishers and shops that came to the event. You can see that list of books on Goodreads!

In case that reel was too quick for you, in my swag bag was:

I loved the mixture of publishers, bookstores, and other cute bookish shops. I really enjoyed my custom live poem from Poesy! Because I got a ton of books in my goodie bag, I spent time learning more about upcoming releases, on small goodies, and coffee to make sure I can stay up all night reading.

I also shopped at Happily Ever After Books, Canada's first romance specific bookstore! I picked up ANGELIKA FRANKENSTEIN MAKES HER MATCH by Sally Thorne, a set of enamel pins, and was gifted a cute keychain!

Author Readings

The best part of the day was the author readings! I really enjoyed the reading and the conversation with the authors, which added an extra level of detail to it all.

I sat through the majority of the author readings, which you can see on their YouTube page:
        1. Clayton Thomas-Muller: Life in the City of Dirty Water
        2. Toronto Book Awards Shortlist Readings
        3. Maude Barlow: Still Hopeful: Lessons from a Lifetime of Activism
        4. Diaspora Dialogues with Tanya Turton

I really appreciated the honesty with which Clayton Thomas-Muller discussed colonialism, Indigenous perspectives, and the need to be active in our communities.

I also got my copy of WRONG SIDE OF THE COURT signed by H.N. Khan! And shout out to my fiance for taking this picture (and generally being a good sport about carrying around all my books for me).

If you haven't gone to a Word on the Street event before - I recommend you go to the next one they host! It's always so much fun, you get to meet a bunch of new people, and learn about new books. What more could you ask for?

About The Word on the Street Toronto

The Word On The Street Toronto is an annual celebration of storytelling, ideas and imagination, hosting Canada’s largest FREE book and magazine festival, and promoting great books by Canadian and Indigenous authors year-round. Since 1990, WOTS Toronto has animated the city's streets and celebrated the stories that connect us with diverse and inclusive programming while championing literacy for readers of all ages. To learn more, visit their website.

Have you been to any book events lately?

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