Boonton NJ Historic Library Hosts First Book Festival

What better way to show off extensive renovations at the historic Boonton Holmes Library than to host the city’s first-ever book festival?

After many interior and exterior improvements were completed, the Boonton Main Street non-profit organized a groundbreaking Friday for a new backyard courtyard with a stage for intimate outdoor performances and events.

The Boonton Books and Beyond Festival welcomes more than 30 authors and presenters to the library, the Boonton Coffee Company, and the Boonton Elks Lodge on November 13 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

With support from Boonton Mayor Richard Corcoran, the event was conceived “as a celebration of New Jersey’s very own homegrown artists and authors, whether native to or based in the Garden State.”

Boonton Holmes Historic Public Library after restoration in 2021.

“We’re thrilled with the overwhelmingly positive response from so many of the state’s outstanding writers,” said Tracy Pryer, Boonton’s recreation director and festival president. “The events will all take place in person, of course with the necessary COVID precautions. So it’s a great opportunity for book lovers to meet and interact with authors.”

The participants represent a wide variety of genres, including literary fiction, mystery, children’s picture books, TV scripts, comic books and more.

The festival provides a homecoming opportunity for Boonton Township native Gina Ippolito, who recently completed a two-year stint as a screenwriter for the CBS sitcom ‘The Unicorn’.

Gina Ippolito, born in Boonton Township, currently a staff writer on the hit CBS comedy "The Unicorn," pitches a pilot for a new sitcom at the Darress Theater in Boonton.

“I think it’s really cool that Boonton and Boonton Township and the surrounding areas have produced so many prolific writers with varied resumes,” said Ippolito, who also wrote for the “Murphy Brown” reboot. “I’m excited to hear them all speak. I think the whole city should be too.’

Ippolito recalls spending time at the Holmes Library as a child when her mother was studying there for a graduate degree.

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