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Bookend: Electric Exhibits

Snapshots from ALA's 2023 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago.
Snapshots from ALA’s 2023 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago.Photos: Rebecca Lomax/American Libraries

The atmosphere was charged at the American Library Association’s (ALA) 2023 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago. At the center of it all, as usual, was its popular Library Marketplace. Thousands of attendees marveled at the rows of vendor booths that hosted signings and mascot meet-and-greets, promoted new book releases, and demonstrated innovative library products. At the specialty stages, library workers gathered for author and illustrator talks, presentations, and enlightening panel discussions. Here are some high-voltage moments from the exhibition floor. Clockwise from top:

Nikole Brown, assistant manager of reference at St. Louis (Mo.) County Library, with Chicago-based drag performer Ginger Forest, who did a “Read the Rainbow” storytime at the Lyrasis booth.

Desiree Thomas, collection development librarian at South Carolina State Library in Columbia, with The Pigeon from Mo Willems’s book series, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary.

Ayn Reyes Frazee, teacher-librarian at Portland (Ore.) Public Schools, reading Bridge to Terabithia at the Banned Books Read-Out sponsored by ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom and Unite Against Book Bans campaign.

Felix Soto, library media center director at John R. Tibbott Elementary School in Bolingbrook, Illinois, with Wimee the Robot from the PBS show Wimee’s Words.

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