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Fay B. Kaigler Children's Book Festival

Celebrating excellence in children’s and young adult literature

***As the situation concerning the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to evolve domestically and internationally, The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) School of Library and Information Science has cancelled the 2020 Fay B. Kaigler Children’s Book Festival (CBF). The festival, which also includes the Ezra Jack Keats Award ceremony, had been scheduled for April 1-3, 2020. You may request to roll your 2020 registration over to the 2021 Festival or you may request a refund. Please complete the 2020 Kaigler Festival Registration Return Form to indicate your preference. Please allow 2-4 weeks for reimbursement processing and contact Registration Coordinator Adrienne Patterson at adrienne.pattersonFREEMississippi with any questions.


The steering committee for the upcoming 53rd annual Fay B. Kaigler Children’s Book Festival regretfully informs you that the festival and all associated activities are cancelled.

Out of an abundance of caution and for the safety of festival participants, the committee made the decision to cancel the festival due to the ongoing threat of COVID-19 (coronavirus). No participants have been diagnosed with COVID-19, nor are they showing symptoms; however, a number of speakers and participants have indicated that they will be unable to travel to the festival.

We understand this is a major inconvenience to festival-goers and a loss to the City of Hattiesburg from an economic and tourism standpoint, but the health and safety of all involved is being prioritized. We hope all of those who are impacted by this cancellation will understand and respect this decision.

News Release

For complete details about USM’s response to the coronavirus situation, which includes information about restrictions on University-sponsored domestic and international travel, visit the USM Office of the Provost’s webpage for COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Updates.


Each spring more than 500 teachers and librarians from across the nation come to Southern Miss to hear major speakers and participate in concurrent sessions and workshops as authors, illustrators, and experts in the field share their knowledge and experience. The highlight of the Festival is the presentation of the Southern Miss Medallion, awarded to an author or illustrator for their body of work.

Register Now!2020 Tentative Schedule

Contact Us

Fay B. Kaigler Children's Book Festival

Cook Library
118 College Dr. #5146
Hattiesburg, MS 30406

Hattiesburg Campus

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The Festival began in 1968.

Over 300 teachers and librarians attend each year.

CEUs are available to Mississippi educators.