Reason No. 10 to attend the Tucson Festival of Books: You might meet your favorite literary character, as this little girl did last year. Authors of all genres will participate in the two-day event, which will take place this weekend on the University of Arizona campus. For complete information, visit tucsonfestivalofbooks.org. courtesy of Polixenni Photography

Whether you’re a diehard literary fan or simply love to curl up with the occasional good book, you’re sure to find something fun to read and see at the third annual Tucson Festival of Books.

Set for this weekend on the University of Arizona campus, the 2011 event welcomes more than 400 notable authors, screenwriters and journalists taking part in 300 presentations, panels, workshops, storytelling and culinary demonstrations, said event chairman Bill Vinner.

Every genre, from current events and children to mystery and sci-fi, will be covered. Returning authors include Elmore Leonard, Philip Caputo, Jamie Ford and J.A. Jance. The festival has also attracted new faces, such as Frank Deford, Annette Gordon-Reed, James Rollins, Jane Hamilton and Elizabeth Berg.

The festival’s goals are two-fold: spotlight Tucson in a positive light while illuminating literacy and educational issues in Southern Arizona. Workshops and activities are offered for all ages both days.

The festival also provides free entertainment in a positive environment that encourages learning.

On Saturday, families can enjoy concerts by the Catalina Foothills High School flute ensemble, the Del Pueblo Brass Quintet and Utterback Middle School’s orchestra and guitar ensemble and jazz band, as well as a performance of “Beauty and the Beast” by the Flowing Wells Drama Club.

On Sunday, audiences will be treated to 19th century music of the American West by Mark Gardner and Rex Rideout, the Lindley Lopez Literary Circus, Moonstruck Coyotes, ZUZI Dance, and the University of Arizona Asian Music Club, among others.

Parking is available in six free campus garages.

Complete information regarding everything from schedules, blogs, parking and first aid to entertainment and authors is available at tucsonfestivalofbooks.com.

If you go

WHAT: Tucson Festival of Books

WHEN: March 12-13

WHERE: UA campus

For more info: tucsonfestivalofbooks.org, twitter.com/tfob, Facebook.com/

tucsonfestivalofbooks. Free Android

and iPhone apps also are available.

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