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Florida Celebration of Reading—Miami

Date: February 07, 2019

Location: SeaFair Megayacht, Miami, Florida

Buy Tickets Author Information Celebration Committee Sponsorship Information Photo Gallery 2019 Sponsors


Since 2001, the Florida Celebration of Reading, founded by former Governor Jeb Bush and his wife, Columba, has raised more than $26 million in support of family literacy programs that help children and their parents improve their literacy skills.

This year’s special event—the first to be held in Miami—will celebrate the legacy of Barbara Bush and will include, as always, an entertaining lineup of bestselling authors. Celebration of Reading activities include a private, intimate luncheon for top business supporters and members of the Bush family; a VIP cocktail reception; the always entertaining reading event featuring bestselling guest authors; and an invitation-only after-party.

Funds raised from the Florida Celebration of Reading—Miami help support programs of the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy.

Parking and Transportation Information for Attendees

Location | Check in
SeaFair Mega Yacht Miami, Bayfront Park South Dock at Chopin Plaza

There are no paper tickets for the evening; you will receive your seating assignment upon arrival.

We’ve partnered with Uber to provide guests with a free ride up to $10.

Add promo code MIAMI2019 to redeem.

Here are instructions for applying codes: In your Uber app, go to your menu by tapping the three bars in the top left corner. Choose “Payment” from the menu, then scroll down to Promotions and tap Add Promo Code to apply. Type in the code, and then click “Add.” New to Uber? Sign up here or simply download the app onto your phone and follow the prompts to sign up, and then follow the instructions above to apply the code.

Parking is available at the InterContinental Hotel for approximately $15 for the first hour and $5 for every additional hour. Limited street parking is also available.


February 7, 2019

12:00 p.m. – Celebration Luncheon
Barbara Bush Legacy, Tribute, and Champion Sponsors, Guest Authors
Invitation Only

6:00 p.m. Welcome Reception
SeaFair Miami

7:00 p.m.  Celebration of Reading
SeaFair Miami

8:30 p.m.  Celebration Lounge and Dessert Bar
SeaFair Miami

Author Information

Exciting news! Governor Jeb Bush added to author lineup.

Governor Bush will help us celebrate our founder’s legacy of literacy by announcing the winners of the $7M Barbara Bush Foundation Adult Literacy XPRIZE. This groundbreaking, multi-year competition—which Gov. Bush helped us launch on his mother’s 90th birthday in 2015—is our single largest investment to revolutionize the future of adult education. You can learn more about the competition here.


Dave Barry

Dave Barry has been a professional humorist ever since he discovered that professional humor was a lot easier than working. For many years he wrote a newspaper column that appeared in more than 500 newspapers and generated thousands of letters from readers who thought he should be fired. Despite this, Barry won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary, although he misplaced it for several years, which is why his wife now keeps it in a secure location that he does not know about. One of Barry’s columns was largely responsible for the movement to observe International Talk Like a Pirate Day every year on September 19. This is probably his most enduring achievement.

Barry has written more than 30 books, including the novels Big TroubleLunaticsTricky Business, and, most recently, Insane City. He has also written a number of books with titles like I’ll Mature When I’m Dead, which are technically classified as nonfiction, although they contain numerous lies. Two of Barry’s books were the basis for the CBS sitcom Dave’s World, which can probably still be seen on cable TV in certain underdeveloped nations. Barry lives in Miami with his family and a dog that is determined to urinate on every square inch of North America. Photography credit: Daniel Portnoy


Brad Meltzer

Brad Meltzer is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Escape Artist and 11 other best-selling thrillers. In addition to his fiction, Brad is one of the only authors to ever have books on the bestseller list for nonfiction (History Decoded), advice (Heroes for My Son and Heroes for My Daughter), children’s books (I Am Amelia Earhart and I Am Abraham Lincoln), and even comic books (Justice League of America), for which he won the prestigious Eisner Award.

He is also the host of Brad Meltzer’s Lost History and Brad Meltzer’s Decoded on the History Channel. The Hollywood Reporter recently put him on their list of Hollywood’s 25 Most Powerful Authors. Meltzer is also responsible for helping find the missing 9/11 flag that the firefighters raised at Ground Zero, making national news on the 15th anniversary of 9/11. His newest book—The First Conspiracy: The Secret Plot to Kill George Washington—is non-fiction and will be released in January 2019.


Susan Page

Susan Page is the Washington Bureau chief for USA Today, where she writes about politics and the White House. She has reported from six continents, covered 10 presidential elections, and interviewed the past nine presidents (three after they left office). Her book, The Matriarch: Barbara Bush and the Making of an American Dynasty, is being published by Twelve in April 2019.

Page has won every journalism award given specifically for coverage of the White House. She has served as president of the White House Correspondents Association and of the Gridiron Club, the oldest association of journalists in Washington. A native of Wichita, Kansas, she received a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University, where she was editor-in-chief of The Daily Northwestern, and a master’s degree from Columbia University. She is married to Carl Leubsdorf, a columnist with The Dallas Morning News. They have two sons, Ben and Will.


Pamela Silva Conde, Emcee

Six-time Emmy award-winning journalist Pamela Silva Conde will join us as emcee. Silva Conde is co-anchor of the Univision Network’s weekday newsmagazine Primer Impacto (First Impact), one of the highest-rated programs in the U.S. and in 12 Latin American countries. Since she joined the show in 2011, she has covered major national and international news stories; including every angle of the tragedies in Houston with Hurricane Harvey and Puerto Rico after hurricane Maria, the attack in Pulse nightclub in Orlando, the terrorist attack at the Boston marathon, as well as Pope Francis’s visits to the United States and Mexico. Previously, she anchored the leading Spanish-language morning newscast in South Florida for the Univision Miami local affiliates. She has also guest-hosted ABC’s The View. In 2013, she was recognized by People en Espanol as one of the 25 most powerful Hispanic women, and earlier in the year was included in their “50 Mas Bellos” (“50 Most Beautiful”) edition.


Sponsorship Information

Thank you to our 2019 sponsors!

Celebration Committee

Honorary Co-Chairs
Sandra and Jeb Bush, Jr.
Autumn and Fred Karlinsky

Honorary Host Committee
Carol Jenkins Barnett
The Honorable Jeb Bush and Mrs. Columba Bush
Romero Britto
Chris Evert
Tom Feeney
Peter Jacobsen
David Lawrence Jr.
The Honorable Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Dexter Lehtinen
Garrett and Diana Richter

Miami Literacy Ambassadors
Sandra and Jeb Bush, Jr., Chairs
Vance Aloupis
Eddie and Maryam Borrego
The Honorable Carlos Curbelo and Cecilia Curbelo
Mike Valdes-Fauli
Saif Ishoof
Amber and Andrew Korge
Cristina and Daniel Diaz Leyva
Raquel (Rocky) A. Rodriguez
John D. Couriel and Rebecca L. Toonkel

Alumni Authors

  • Dr. Arthur Agatston
  • Julianna Baggott
  • Derrick Barnes
  • Andrea Beaty
  • Michael Beschloss
  • Paulette Bourgeois
  • James Bradley
  • Marc Brown
  • Christopher Buckley
  • Laura Bush
  • Doro Bush Koch
  • Donovan Campbell
  • Eric Carle
  • Harlan Coben
  • Joanna Cole
  • Jill Conner Browne
  • Robin Cook
  • Michael Crichton
  • Drew Daywalt
  • Steve Doocy
  • Eric Draper
  • Jeffrey Engel
  • Antwone Fisher
  • Fannie Flagg
  • Carl Hiaasen
  • Carol and Mary Higgins Clark
  • A.J. Jacobs
  • Haven Kimmel
  • Greg Kincaid
  • Jeff Kinney
  • Debbie Macomber
  • Mary Matalin
  • James McBride
  • Brad Meltzer
  • Greg Mortenson
  • Bill O’Reilly
  • Dana Perino
  • Susan Orlean
  • Mary Pope Osborne
  • Sharon Robinson
  • Art Smith
  • R.L. Stein
  • Randall Wallace
  • N.D. Wilson
  • Markus Zusak

Get in Touch

You may also contact us by phone at 850.562.5300 or by mail at:
Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy
516 North Adams Street • Tallahassee, Florida 32301