“I did not think that the Children Literature Festival would be as crowded as now although I saw advertisements for it on the television and in newspapers. My son and daughter cannot choose where to go first as they have too many choice to participate. Their happiness even spread to me,” said Daw Ni Ni Aye, who visited the festival with her children.
The literary festival, being held at Myanmar Information and Institution Technology in Chanmyathatzi Township in Mandalay from 27 to 29 January is being visited by students from all schools in Mandalay Region, including public schools, private schools and monastic schools who also participated in various events of the festival.
“I can’t help comparing children participating in the festival with butterflies flying in a colourful garden,” said a writer in Mandalay.
The festival is being organized jointly by the Ministry of Information and the Mandalay Region Government, with the assistance of Hepta Mix run by Ko Kyaw Wunna Swe.
Golden Duck Restaurant donated 1,500 lunch boxes, bottles of drinking water and soft drinks for attendants at the first day of the event and a total of 1,000 lunch boxes and bottles of drinking water and soft drinks for another two days of the event. In addition, the company will provide 10,000 tins of Asia soft drinks and Lucy Purified Drinking Water will supply 10,000 bottles of drinking water for the festival, according to Ko Wunna Swe.
Although it was estimated that about 20,000 visitors would come to the festival, the actual number of visitors reached 27,000 on the first day of the festival and more than 40,000 on its second day. Book stalls at the festival could also sell books worth more than K 24 million at the festival.
“Although the festival opens at 9 am, people are waiting to visit the festival at about 8 O’Clock with their cars and motorbikes. It is an amazing success. Book stalls owner are also very happy as they can sell many books. The festival is as crowded as the Thingyan Festival around the moat,” Director-General U Maung Pe of the Information and Public Relations Department said.
A book house from Yangon named as Naing Naing, which also sold books at the similar event in Yangon, came to the festival bringing about 4,000 books, all of which were sold out on the first day of the event and had to bring more books for the festival. A service provider as the book store said that it was a great pleasure to see parents who buy every books their children asked for. Children, parents and teachers are looking forwards to another children literature festival like this one.
Min Htet Aung
(Mandalay Sub-printing House)