COVINGTON -- Families can be entertained and also educated at a special event this weekend.
The ninth annual Literacy Festival is scheduled from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday on the Covington Square. It is hosted by The Learning Center and Main Street Covington.
"It is a fun, relaxed, family-friendly event with activities for children of all ages," Mollie Melvin, executive director of The Learning Center. "It's a great opportunity for families to connect to their community."
Area organizations like schools, child care centers and nonprofit groups will have booths set up with more information. Additionally, each will have a literacy-based game, craft or activity.
Books and other prizes also will be given away at the event.
Guests will be entered into a drawing for a WiFi Kindle 3G, sponsored by Main Street Covington, if they make a purchase and present a receipt from any merchant on the Square Friday or Saturday. Winners will be announced on stage at the end of the festival, and they don't have to be present to win.
Student groups will perform throughout the day, and BB Fuzz will perform at 1 p.m.
Anyone in first grade and older also can participate in the fifth annual sidewalk chalk art contest, sponsored by the Southern Heartland Art Guild.
Participants can register for free in advance by e-mailing Melvin at email@example.com or beginning at 9:30 a.m. Saturday to begin drawing at 10 a.m. The first 50 to register will receive a free palette of artist chalk.
The contest will end at 1 p.m.
The festival, which is only one of four literacy-based festivals in the state, expects to accommodate between 600 and 700 people on the Square.
In a related event, the Southern Christian Writers Guild will feature Julie Cannon, a novelist from Athens, at DeKalb Technical College on Bob Williams Parkway from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday. It's open to those 16 years old and up.