Nothing quite like LitFest exists in any other public high school in the country, where such incredible literary talent is available to us and our students. HP LitFest is a rare program that inspires students to get involved with the event as well as practice their creative and business writing skills. My three kids have attended Highland Park schools and I can tell you how proud this program has made me. My youngest was a liaison to the LitFest committee her senior year. She loved the experience so well she stayed involved as a college freshman by helping with the event's graphic materials.
In 25 years LitFest has presented over 1000 student workshops and brought 25 amazing authors to the Dallas community to give a public keynote address, including last year’s Pulitzer prize-winning author, Hampton Sides.
This year promises to be a treat as well! Join us Thursday evening 2/25/21 at 7pm for the free, virtual Keynote presentation by award-winning, best-selling author, Tea Obreht. All are welcome to watch this free presentation and can register for the event online at HPLitFest.com. HP LitFest Keynote presentation is made possible by the generous support of La Fiesta de Las Seis Banderas.
Obreht will also address high school students on Friday. Her presentation, “The Mystery in the Story,” discusses how every writer utilizes the same techniques developed in mystery novels to create suspense, develop characters, and engage the reader. She invites our students to analyze some of the works in their own curriculum using this viewpoint.
For those not familiar with LitFest, the most important part of our Literary Festival takes place the day after the Keynote when every Highland Park High School student attends a writing workshop of their choosing during their English period. In addition to the workshops, LitFest also offers a student book club, Open Mic night, writing contest, and book drives. In recent years, HP LitFest has added programming to the Middle School and each of the elementary schools. This year, the Middle School students were treated to a presentation by award-winning children’s author, Wendelin Van Draanen and the elementary schools are participating in a poetry contest.
HP LitFest is a collaboration between dedicated parents and the English Department at Highland Park High School with the goal to inspire and encourage students, teachers, and the community to celebrate language in all its forms. Please join us.
By Judy Conner, 2021 LitFest Co-Chair