‘Creating a Legacy’: Sixth Sacramento Black Book Fair celebrates literacy, diversity

The sixth annual Sacramento Black Book Fair brought community members together Friday and Saturday in the Oak Park neighborhood for a celebration featuring book signings, poetry readings, art displays and more.

This year’s theme was “Creating a Legacy,” and the event was free.

Passion Bailey attends the fair every year. She said that the book fair shows how important representation is for black kids, but her favorite part of the fair is the parade during which people write the name of their favorite book on a sign for all to see.

Bailey is the president of the Crystal Bowl Book Club, and she helps organize the book drive that runs concurrently with the fair. This year’s fair is special for Bailey because she attended with members of the Boys in the Hood Book Club, a group that helps get young boys interested in reading and writing.

“It’s very impactful for the community because it’s a black book fair, and so even with the book drive, we promote diversity in literature,” Bailey said, “and I think for young kids to see images that look like them, there’s nothing comparable to that.”

Roman Miller, 11, is a member of the Boys in the Hood Book Club. Reading is important to him because he wants a good education.

“The first booth was like a quest to have every booth sign your paper,” Roman said about what he enjoyed at the fair.

Booths featured black authors like Ameer-Hasaan Walton promoting their work. Walton’s book “My Historically Black Purpose” talks about the importance of historically black colleges to the black community. Walton is from San Francisco but he went to a historically black college in Maryland.

“I think the book fair is a chance for everybody to get to see kind of holistically all the things that black people can bring to literature and also creatively with poetry, spoken word, things like that,” Walton said. “I think it’s a good spot to come through to get a sense of the culture.”