There’s a holiday happening right now that isn’t getting the attention it deserves. I’m speaking, of course, of National Princess Week, which runs the last full week in April every year. Conceived as a joint venture by Disney and Target back in 2013, it absolutely came into existence as a way to push even more princess-branded merchandise on the eager public. Yet librarians would be wise not to dismiss National Princess Week out of hand as crass commercialism. There’s a lot of gold to be mined from this particular tiara.
For one thing, the programming opportunities are endless, and don’t need to be limited to the types of programs that might typically be associated with princesses – though those have their place, too. Global interest in princesses has never been higher, particularly now that we have our very own feminist, biracial, American Princess in the British Royal Family. Since today’s real-life princesses spend their public lives doing good work and supporting important causes such as environmentalism, education, and mental health, a service project in honor of National Princess Week is an easy programming tie-in. Last year, with excitement over the upcoming Royal Wedding booming, we hosted a special wedding tea party at the library. In the past, we’ve had Disney Heroine sing-alongs, book balls that encouraged children to come in costume as their favorite literary character, and fairy tale-themed toddler programs. This year, our library is celebrating with a craft program for princes and princesses and a garden party at our local historical society.
Another easy idea for National Princess Week is a princess-themed book display. The sign for our display includes photographs of real-life princesses from around the world: Japan, Bhutan, and Lesotho, Sweden, Norway, and of course, the UK. The display includes fiction, picture books, and non-fiction. A brief list of selections is below.
Bad Princess: True Tales from Behind the Tiara by Kris Waldherr
From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess by Meg Cabot
Grounded: The Adventures of Rapunzel by Megan Morrison
Real Princesses: An Inside Look at Royal Life by Valerie Wilding
To Be a Princess: The Fascinating Lives of Real Princesses by Hugh Brewster
Cordially Uninvited by Jennifer Roy
The Duchess and Guy: A Rescue-to-Royalty Love Story by Nancy Furstinger
Are you celebrating National Princess Week at your library?
This post addresses the following ALSC Core Competencies: III. Programming Skills.