Five best events at the Miami Book Fair

Attendees walk through the 2019 street fair. Courtesy of Miami Book Fair.

After a fully online event last year, the Miami Book Fair is returning for a hybrid experience from November 14 to 21.

About 300 authors will participate in online events, and 100 or so will appear in person. All virtual presentations will be available through the fair’s website, where more detailed instructions can be found.

Some aspects can only be appreciated in person such as the street fair and author panels, which are both held at Miami Dade College, 300 NE Second Ave., in downtown Miami. Even though the fair will be smaller than usual, it will be just as fun and impactful. The street fair begins on Friday the 19th and ends on Sunday the 21st.

Here are five aspects of the fair that you should not miss.

Bari Weiss signs books for her readers at her meet and greet. Courtesy of Miami Book Fair.

Author events

The Miami Book Fair is known as the largest literary gathering in the nation and hosts hundreds of author events each year — both during the festival and in the months before and after it. A few authors attending will be Charles Blow, Les Standiford, Paula Stone Williams, Thad Ziolkowski and Lisa Taddeo. There are panel discussions and book signings with a wide array of topics, such as environmental issues, LGBTQ+ stories, politics and more. The Miami Book Fair will share specific information on these events through its social media so stay updated through their Instagram.

Los Wizzards perform at The Porch in 2019. Courtesy of Miami Book Fair.

The Porch

With a packed schedule of live music and entertainment, the Porch is the place to be. In previous years, there have been outdoor art exhibitions, band performances, spoken word and silent poetry discos. This year, there will be performances by Afrobeta, The Jazz Collective, The Biscayne Poet and more. With giant versions of popular games like chess and Uno as well as Biscayne Bay Brewing beer, this year’s activities will continue to impress and entertain.  

Attendees look through books at a vendor stand. Courtesy of Miami Book fair.

Local and international vendors  

Buying books has never been easier. With hundreds of vendors selling volumes of all kinds, the possibilities are endless. Artisans will sell their handmade products and new authors will peddle copies of their books. Comic books, young adult novels, books in Spanish, religious books and much more will be available at the street fair. The Urban Oasis Farmer’s Market will also be there with locally grown and produced food. 

Street performers put on a show during the street fair. Courtesy of Miami Book Fair.

Multicultural entertainment

The Fair has also become a multicultural center, featuring events in English, Spanish and Creole. With performances and authors from all over the world, attendees will be able to get a glimpse into various cultures. Sons of Mystro, The Drag Dolls, DJ Carlos Menendez and other artists will be at the fair. There will also be various food stands all over the fair and at the food court, providing a variety of eating options for everyone, including Cuban food, Greek food, Asian food and more. 

Performers interact with kids in the audience. Courtesy of Miami Book Fair.

Children’s Alley

The Children’s Alley provides numerous entertainment options for kids, including theatrical performances, arts and crafts, science activities, hands-on exhibits and storytelling. 

For everyone’s safety, people attending author readings, conversations and scheduled events at the Children’s Alley will need to RSVP ahead of time. 

More information about the fair can be found at miamibookfair.com, the fair’s Instagram @miamibookfair and its Twitter @MiamiBookFair.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the number of authors to speak virtually and wrongly said there would be meet and greets with authors. Also two parts of the Children’s Alley, costumed characters and magic shows, will not be held. We regret the errors.

Associate Editor

Sofia Zuñiga is pursuing a bachelor's in Digital Journalism with a master's in Global Strategic Communication. She is also completing a minor in Social Media and E-Marketing Analytics, and a certificate in Queer Studies. Currently, she is an NBCU DEI fellow, with an interest in LGBTQ topics and social issues.

Jackson Epling is a student at FIU studying journalism. He hopes to use his passion for writing to make an impact on the community and the world.