Kent Haruf

The Kent Haruf Literary Celebration will take place for a second time Sept. 27-29. Haruf, pictured, was an award-winning author who lived in Salida until his death in 2014.

The Kent Haruf Literary Celebration will return for a second edition Sept. 27-29 at Salida SteamPlant.

Haruf was an award-winning author of six novels and also co-wrote a book of prose and photography. His works have been translated into 36 different languages. He lived in Salida until his death in 2014.

This year’s celebration will feature presenters who knew Haruf intimately.

“This year more people are coming to speak – people who worked with Kent and friends of Kent,” Haruf’s wife, Cathy Haruf, said. “It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Haruf’s daughter, Sorel Haruf, will facilitate the event’s creative writing workshop. She has been a teacher for 30 years.

Other presenters include Mark Spragg, Sue Hodson, Peter Brown, Gregg Schwipps and Carol Samson.

“It’s for writers and readers and fans of Kent Haruf,” Cathy Haruf said about the celebration. “It’s for everybody.”

Spragg was written four books, including “Where Rivers Change Direction.”

Brown is a photographer who collaborated with Haruf on “West of Last Chance,” a book of prose and photography.

Hodson formerly worked at The Huntington Library, where all of Haruf’s papers are kept.

Schwipps is a professor and novelist who was also a student of Haruf’s at Southern Illinois University.

Samson is a director and playwright who adapted Haruf’s novel “The Tie That Binds” so that it can be performed.

Two theatrical performances of “The Tie That Binds” will take place at September’s celebration, one in the evening of Sept. 28 and one in the afternoon of Sept. 29. Those performances will take place in the SteamPlant theater and will be open to the public.

The celebration will also feature presentations of “Our Souls at Night,” a movie made from Haruf’s book by the same name. Cathy Haruf said either the director or someone else involved with the film will be here to lead a discussion.

To register for the literary celebration, visit or contact Cathy Haruf at 719-221-0691 or

She encouraged people to register soon because space is limited.

A full schedule of the celebration is on the event’s website.

The celebration is also a fundraiser for the Kent Haruf Memorial Scholarship, which is open to high school juniors and seniors interested in creative writing. More information on the scholarship, which has a March deadline, can also be found on the event’s website.

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