If you love literature, there's no better place to be on Saturday than Ybor City.
At the Cuban Club and in the streets around it, more than 70 authors, musicians and artists will be reading and performing at the second annual Deep Carnivale: A Celebration of Words.
The daylong free event, which emphasizes the importance of literacy and the work of Tampa Bay area writers, will feature recent books by John Capouya (Gorgeous George: The Outrageous Bad-Boy Wrestler Who Created American Pop Culture), Karen Brown (Pins and Needles) and James Reese (The Dracula Dossier).
Other local writers and performers scheduled include Darrell House, Walter "Wally B." Jennings, Bob Devin Jones, the Times' Jeff Klinkenberg, Venus Jones, Rhonda J. Nelson, Gianna Russo, Enid Shomer, Lizz Straight and James Tokley Sr.
"We'll have something for everybody," event director David Audet says. Created by the Artists and Writers Group, the folks who brought Tampa the legendary Artists and Writers Balls back in the 1980s, Deep Carnivale brings readers together with poets, fiction and nonfiction writers, playwrights, songwriters and other artists.
Audet says the event has expanded from last year's debut. "For the first one, we just had the lobby of the Cuban Club. This time we have the whole building." There will also be several stages on the streets outside, with live music all day from such local performers as Ronny Elliott, Maggie Council and Rebekah Pulley.
One component of Deep Carnivale will be "more kids' stuff than last year," Audet says. Children's Future Hillsborough will present activities in the Ybor Room of the Hillsborough Community College Ybor campus for "age 2 up to the age kids decide they're not kids anymore."
There will also be a cool lounge for teen readers, staged readings of new plays in the Cuban Club's refurbished theater and "mature audience" performances by spoken word and hip-hop poets in the club's Cantina.
Authors will sell and sign their books, and vendors will offer books, spoken-word CDs, food and other merchandise.
Deep Carnivale will add visual art and film to readings, music and other performances, Audet says. "I like to mix everything up."
Colette Bancroft can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 893-8435.