The Nantucket Book Foundation, under which the Book Festival operates, brings visiting authors into all levels of the Nantucket schools and who are of particular interest to island students. New in 2015, the Visiting Author Program demonstrates the Nantucket Book Foundation's commitment to benefit our community as a year-round presence and influence. Underwater photographer Michael Patrick O'Neill, and Lynda Mullaly Hunt, author of Fish in a Tree, were our first two Visiting Authors. Laurie Halse Anderson, a National Book Award finalist, visited all grade levels in October 2017.
Jason Reynolds visited Nantucket students in grades 5-12 in April of 2019. His presentations touched on the harsh reality of his upbringing and education before becoming an award-winning poet and novelist. Read about his visit to our schools here.
Our outreach programs to students were created by Festival Co-Founder Mary Haft in partnership with the dedicated librarians, teachers, and principals at our Nantucket schools. Funding was provided by generous grants from the Nantucket Golf Club Foundation and the Community Foundation for Nantucket, as well as ongoing support from our sponsors and donors.