Small Town Revival: Apex, NC
What I enjoy the most as my life of author, is visiting the small towns. The very small towns I eschewed for city life, now delight me. I’ve met the best people, learned the most interesting history, and heard the best stories. Cities can’t compete with Small Town USA .....
Last weekend I visited another small town. Apex, North Carolina, is a next door neighbor to Raleigh where we lived for two years, but we’d never visited Apex. The occasion was Peak City Publishing’s Book Festival, Reading Roundup. Peak City is the publisher of my Little Beth Books.
It was held in Halle Cultural Arts Center, a downtown building, old but renovated into a beautiful facility with character. The event had been promoted as a family day and delivered what they promised. A family of four could have lunch for $10. Take that, Disneyworld! Lots of giveaways kept the day lively and fun, the children’s corner was packed with activities and the books were at publisher’s special prices. Heavy traffic paraded through all day with lots of children, strollers and dads and moms. It was a treat for me to see so many young families.
This is a great event for the community as it brings people to the downtown which is a destination itself. This town has a fantastic indie bookstore, All Booked Up, where the evening reception for authors and illustrators was held, and every other kind of store, bakery and restaurants that a viable downtown needs.
My husband and I walked up and down the sidewalk by streetlight and open doors of shops. It’s been a long time since we’ve done that. It was a nice de ja vu feeling holding hands and walking slowly, something we did before we lit out for college in a hurry.
I hope the business community gets behind this small publisher and promotes and helps fund her annual event. We were only two, but we drove to get there, paid for two nights’ accommodation, ate in their downtown restaurants, bought gas…see what I mean? Not just the literary community but the whole town can benefit from this event. I just love small towns that work to maintain the integrity and vitality of their downtowns. I was in such a rush to leave that.