Ta-Nehisi Coates

Harold Washington Literary Award winner Ta-Nehisi Coates

The 36th Chicago’s Printers Row Lit Fest has been canceled. Citing city and state restrictions on large public gatherings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival announced in a press release that it would be “impossible for the event to proceed as planned over Labor Day weekend 2020.” 

The largest outdoor literary showcase in the Midwest will return in the summer of 2021.

“We encourage everyone to keep supporting independent booksellers during this difficult time,” said Bonnie Sanchez-Carlson, president and executive director of the Near South Planning Board, which presents the festival. “Printers Row Lit Fest will return, but until then, take advantage of the programming at your local bookstores and follow them on social media. They are an essential part of our communities.”

The Near South Planning Board is a not-for-profit community-based organization serving businesses, institutions and property owners of the Near South Side of Chicago since 1946. Besides founding of the Printers Row Lit Fest, the organization also presents the annual Harold Washington Literary Award, which “recognizes diverse and stimulating authors who address issues of contemporary life and whose literary achievements include a significant body of work that has touched the public mind and imagination.”

The 2020 recipient of the Harold Washington Literary Award is New York Times bestselling author and National Book Award winner Ta-Nehisi Coates .

For more information and updates throughout the year, visit printersrowlitfest.org.

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