Writers on the River

Now in its sixth year, the author event and book signing returns to central Illinois this month.

by Mae Gilliland Wright with Molly Deadmond
“Meet authors, buy books, support a good cause.”

“Meet authors, buy books, support a good cause.” That is the mission of Writers On The River, an author event and book signing that returns to central Illinois this month. Hosted by the nonprofit organization Healing With Words, it takes place at the Par-A-Dice Hotel in East Peoria on July 17, 2021. The event will feature more than 90 authors, including New York Times and USA Today bestsellers.

Event organizer Jillian Jacobs, who spent time in Peoria during her days at Western Illinois University, wanted to bring this event to the Greater Peoria area because of her connection to the city. “About eight years ago, I noticed that book signings were popping up in Ohio and the Chicago area,” she explains. “I wanted to bring one to central Illinois.”

Over the past five years, Writers On The River has raised more than $30,000 for charity, as well as $1,000 in donated goods. This year, the charity recipient will be Thistle Farms, a Nashville-based nonprofit which provides residential services and various social enterprises for women survivors recovering from prostitution, trafficking and addiction. Thistle Farms’ Director of Events Dorris Walker-Taylor will discuss her own harrowing journey, with a variety of products available for purchase.

Healing With Words shares Thistle Farms’ mission of helping and healing survivors of abuse, addiction, trafficking and prostitution. By bringing together readers, authors and survivors, the organization believes the art of the written word can provide entertainment and escape for anyone.

“This will be our sixth year, and I am so very proud of how much we’ve built this signing and grateful to Peoria for hosting us,” Jacobs adds. Tickets are available online and at the door on the day of the event. Visit writersontheriver.com for more information. PM

This article was sponsored by Big Picture Initiative. Learn more at bigpicturepeoria.org.

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