Cotton candy and pop-corn, balloons and soap-bubbles. Chennai Book Fair had all the ingredients for a family picnic. Parents with young children capitalised on this setting to make a visit to the fair and have their family day out.
“We came early so that the kids, apart from buying books, can also enjoy the evening out,” said Venkatesh Babu, IT professional, as his two young daughters treated themselves to bowls of fruit salad. Like Venkatesh’s several families had come to the fair with small children. They were a common sight at the lawns outside the arena. Kids sat eating ice-creams as their parents sorted out their latest pickings at the fair.
Krithika Shankar and her friend Meenakshi, along with four kids, sat around a pile of books. They had bought books worth ` 10,000 between the two of them. “Our husbands footed the bill and left. We are now segregating the books,” said Krithika.
Business boomed for the food stall owners and vendors. Cotton candy and ice-creams were popular among the kids. Fruit salads was also in demand.
Some publishers like Kumudham handed out balloons with their brand name to those visiting their stall. A constant stream of soap bubbles floated in the air as children played with bubble-blower toys.
Apart from an immense collection of books, the State’s biggest book fair also offered a fun excursion for families.