This fall, The Rutgers–Camden Center for the Arts will participate in The Big Read for the seventh time, celebrating Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. We aim to connect approximately 2,000 New Jerseyeans to the book and to each other through a two-month celebration, featuring a lecture series, performances, art installation sites*, storytelling workshops, and more.

For more information on The Big Read or to have your own book group, call Noreen Scott Garrity at (856) 225-6306.


Calendar of Events

One copy of Fahrenheit 451 or a companion book for younger readers will be given to each attendee at all of the following events.

Family-Friendly Kick-Off Celebration

Saturday, October 8
Northgate Park (Off-campus), 6th & Elm Streets, Camden, NJ
The kick-off event will feature RCCA Storyteller, Kyle Jakubowski, on hand to delight listeners with Not-so-Scary Sci-Fi Tales, as well as art activities, book discussion group sign-ups, and giveaways. Each participant will receive a copy of Fahrenheit 451 or an age appropriate companion book.


Haunted Halloween Party w/ Not-So-Scary Stories

Thursday, October 27 at 5:30 p.m.
Camden County Library’s Nilsa I. Cruz-Perez Downtown Branch
Come dressed in your Halloween best and have fun with craft and food demonstrations. Everyone’s favorite storyteller, Kyle Jakubowski, will weave his delightful word magic and captivate children of all ages through interactive storytelling. The session includes several different stories adapted from picture books, which the children help to tell through call-and-response, creative movement, and other ways that provide engaged learning and encourage a love of words and an interest in reading. Space is limited. Please call ahead to ensure your space: Miranda Powell 856-225-6202.


Lecture Series

Keynote on Fahrenheit 451 presented by graphic novelist Tim Hamilton
Thursday, October 20, 5:30 p.m.
Stedman Gallery, Fine Arts Building
Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451: The Authorized Adaptation, is a graphic novel written and illustrated by Tim Hamilton, which includes a foreword by Bradbury. The graphic novel was nominated for an Eisner award in the “Best Adaptation of Another Work” category. Hamilton will discuss his process in adapting the classic novel.

Black Science Fiction
Thursday, October 27, 12:15 p.m.

Stedman Gallery, Fine Arts Building
Dr. Keith Green, associate professor of English, and Director of the Africana Studies program, Rutgers-Camden, will present “Black Science Fiction,” exploring science fiction produced by people of African descent in the 20th and 21st centuries.

The Lies that Books Tell
Tuesday, November 1 at 12:15 p.m.
Stedman Gallery, Fine Arts Building

Why burn books? Dr. Jillian Sayre, assistant professor of English, Rutgers-Camden, will discuss the revolutionary work of writing — and reading — imaginative literature.


Special Programs

“LIVING BOOKS” Performance
Shades of Poe
Thursday, October 13

Fractured Mirror Productions presents this theatrical presentation of Edgar Allen Poe’s chilling works, Shades of Poe.  The master of terror himself, Edgar Allen Poe, will guide you as you listen to tales of woe beginning with The Raven and 5 more spirits. Stories include: The Raven, Shadow: A Parable, The Tell-Tale Heart, The Imp of the Perverse, Berenice, and The Cask of Amontillado as well as several lines of Poe’s poetry. Alternate stories: Ligeia and The Black Cat.


The Big Read Installation Sites: A Real Page Turner
November 7 – December 9, 2016

Paul Robeson Library & Stedman Gallery Lobby
Sculptures will be created by the page turning of repurposed books! Participants of all ages will have the opportunity to contribute to the growing installations.


Fahrenheit 451 Book Exhibition
November 7 – December 9, 2016
Paul Robeson Library on the Rutgers-Camden Campus
The Paul Robeson Library will feature a collection of books, biographies, criticism, and social aspects related to Ray Bradbury’s book, Fahrenheit 451.



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The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest.
RCCA arts education programs are made possible in part with generous support from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, Subaru of America Foundation, and other generous supporters.