World Book Night’s Top Giver Cities

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With less than two weeks until World Book Night (WBN), the spotlight is turning to local parties and events to be hosted by bookstores and libraries across the U.S. in the week before the April 23 giveaway of a half million special editions. After three months of intense behind-the-scenes logistical activity, the books are on their way to stores and libraries in the U.S. and to four military bases overseas, thanks to WBN’s publisher sponsors, Ingram, and UPS.

More than 750 bookstores and libraries are hosting pre-WBN receptions, where, in addition to picking up their books, volunteer givers will receive buttons, bookmarks, a guidelines letter, and a Thank You certificate. “We really wanted the givers to meet each other beforehand, and even meet some local media,” said U.S. WBN Executive Director Carl Lennertz. “We want them to talk about their giveaway locations and get each other fired up. The booksellers and librarians also wanted to thank them, as well as remind them to post messages and photos on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. We want the impact of the day to last long after.”

Noting that there will be high giver turnout in every big city across the country, Lennertz added, “There are even more givers per capita in smaller cities and towns across the country, which is fantastic.”

The top 25 giver cities per capita are:

  • Austin, Texas
  • Indianapolis, Indiana
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Louisville, Kentucky
  • Knoxville, Tennessee
  • Wichita, Kansas
  • Durango, Colorado
  • Jackson, Mississippi
  • Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Wilmington, Ohio
  • Santa Cruz, California
  • Athens, Georgia
  • Hamilton, Montana
  • Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Naperville, Illinois
  • Portland, Maine
  • Asheville, North Carolina
  • Odessa, Texas
  • Foxboro, Massachusetts
  • Cedar Rapids, Iowa
  • Blytheville, Arkansas
  • Anchorage, Alaska
  • Deland, Florida
  • Corvallis, Oregon

Regions where noteworthy turnout is expected include Central and Western Washington State; California’s Oakland/Berkeley/East Bay areas; Central Michigan; Western Upstate New York; Southern New Hampshire/Vermont, and suburban Atlanta.

“It is cool how this has taken hold across America. There are givers in 5,800 towns and cities,” Lennertz said. Booksellers and librarians have embraced the campaign, and some have organized major activities by local groups to complement the outreach by the individual givers.

In addition to local celebrations, World Book Night U.S. closing events will be held on April 23 in Minneapolis and New York City.

In Minneapolis, authors Kate DiCamillo and Leif Enger will appear at Magers & Quinn Booksellers at 7:30 p.m. on April 23 at an event moderated by Laurie Hertzel of the Star-Tribune.  In New York City, World Book Night honorary chairperson Anna Quindlen, author Buzz Bissinger, and some surprise guests will be at the Barnes & Noble Union Square store at 7:00 p.m.