MAPLEWOOD, NJ - It was another successful year for the Maplewood Ideas Festival, which began with Khalil Gibran Muhammad in conversation with Angie Thomas on March 18 at The Woodland, and concluded with the presentation of the 4th Annual Maplewood Literary Award to author Pamela Erens on April 1 at the Maplewood Memorial Library.

The Ideas Festival is a program of the Maplewood Library, which organizes the annual event.

At the opening event, Khalil Muhammad, who is a professor of History, Race and Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School and is the former Director of the Schomberg Center for Research in Black Culture, spoke with Angie Thomas, the author of the new novel The Hate U Give, which has been optioned for a major motion picture.

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Following an engaging dialogue between Muhammad and Thomas, the audience had an opportunity to ask questions and add their own thoughts. Maplewood Township Committee Member Geg Lembrich was the first to talk, and thanked the speakers for the informative dialogue and discussion about the book, and its message.

In addition to the opening event, the Ideas Festival hosted several lectures and presentations, with speakers which included artists, writers, and architects. The Ideas Festival also included a New Jersey Makers Day at the Hilton Branch Library, which which gave kids of all ages the chance to build, create, and experiment with 3D software.

The Ideas Festival concluded with the presentation of the 4th Annual Maplewood Literary Award to local author Pamela Erens.

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