Don’t Miss the New and Expanded Kerouac Literary Festival

Russell Banks (web photo courtesy of

After 22 years of the annual Lowell Celebrates Kerouac! festival on the first weekend of October, the long-time organizers and new allies and partners came together to boost the festival to a higher orbit. The re-named Jack Kerouac Literary Festival will open on Thursday, Sept. 30, and run wild with events through Sunday, Oct. 3. There are so many high points that I don’t want to pick out one or two right now. This festival also coincides with the 25th anniversary of the non-profit organization called Lowell Celebrates Kerouac!, Inc., which has been the driving force behind the festivals all these years.

In addition to the traditional core activities centered on Kerouac’s literature, life, legacy, and Lowell, the new and expanded festival will offer a variety of literary activities the range beyond the Kerouac theme. But in the end, it’s all about writing, books, music, art, film—the full creative spectrum associated with words and images, language and sound.

Sandra Lim (web photo courtesy of

Who’s going to be there?

Dennis McNally, Alan Lightman, David Amram, Maggie Dietz, Samkhann Khoeun, Russell Banks, Anita Shreve, Dave Daniel, Tom Perrotta, Andre Dubus III, Sandra Lim, Jay Atkinson, Ann Hood, Steve O’Connor, David Macaulay, Antje Duvekot, the band Ameranouche, Andrew Shelling, and more.

Dennis McNally (web photo courtesy of

Anita Shreve

For the most complete listing of the Festival activities, visit 

One change: Note that the Dennis McNally talk about “Kerouac and the American Bohemian Tradition” at UMass Lowell begins at 12 noon on Friday, Oct. 1, in the O’Leary Library auditorium, Room 222, on 61 Wilder Street, UMass Lowell South Campus. Visitor parking is available in the lot on Wilder Street

I’ll be writing more about the individual guest writers, artists, and various events over the next two weeks. In addition to the Cultural Organization of Lowell, UMass Lowell, and National Park Service there are many co-sponsors, contributors, and donors who are making the festival possible.