Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Hill Cumorah, Here I Come!

by Sariah S. Wilson

So, I got invited to come out and do some book signings in Palmyra during the Hill Cumorah pageant, which will just happen to coincide with the release of my third book, a story about Ammon (which will be the first book out of four total based on the sons of Mosiah).

It sounds as if other authors who are coming plan on being there for the entire length of the pageant. I can't be away from home for that long, so I will only be there on July 11 and July 12 (Friday and Saturday).

I've never been to New York before, let alone Palmyra. I plan on spending my days at Latter-day Harvest, the lovely bookstore that invited me out, so I won't have time to do sightseeing. I do hope to see the pageant either Friday or Saturday night (although Friday would probably be preferable, I worry about it being opening night).

I'm looking for advice from any authors who have done signings during the pageant - what you would recommend, what worked for you, what didn't, what you would do differently. Were there big crowds at the bookstore? (I'm wondering how many promo items I should bring with me.) And I'm curious whether any authors I know online will be there doing signings as well.

I'm also looking for tips from anyone who has attended the pageant before, the best time to get there and how to navigate the crowds, where I should try to sit, etc., or anyone who has any suggestions of things that I must see while driving around in my rental car (noting that I won't have time to stop and explore).

Because I'm guessing a lot of people come to Palmyra for this event seeing as how long it took me to find a hotel room, and I'm wondering what I can do not only to help my trip go as smoothly as possible, but to have as much fun as I can while I'm there.


At 5/03/2008 8:59 PM, Blogger Annette Lyon said...

Oh, I hope you get some great advice--I'll be taking notes. I got invited this year, but it's not in the cards. I'm hoping I can go out in 09. When you get back, tell us all about it!

At 5/04/2008 2:48 PM, Anonymous John Starrs said...

For a good background on the Pageant by ABC News go here-

or to read my own story about The Hill Cumorah Pageant go here-

It is a marvelous experience and opening night should be just fine. Be absolutely sure to spend time in the Sacred Grove. The tours at any site are wonderful, but time consuming. You can see most of the sites on your own from the outside. You will be next door to the Grandin Building when you are doing your signings. So be sure to at least walk around in there.

Yes, it will be busy, and hopefully a rewarding time for you. Best of luck.

At 5/04/2008 6:03 PM, Blogger Danyelle Ferguson said...

I grew up in PA and attended the Cumorah pageant twice. My only suggestion is to arrive early, park as close to the bookstore as you can. Then plan on staying late and chatting with people so you don't have to fight all the traffic.

It's been ten years since I've been to the LDS bookstore at the pageant, but I remember that it was small and crampy - lots of people.

If you do happen to get some time, I highly recommend going to the Sacred Grove. It's changed since I've been there, when we were allowed to roam and sit down on the logs. Now it's a path you walk along, but there's this amazing peaceful spirit that absolutely testifies about the first vision. I once had the opportunity to attend with sister missionaries for a mission conference & we had a testimony meeting in the grove. It was incredible.

But if you are signing books like crazy and only get to attend the pageant, you will walk away a very, very happy person. I love the Cumorah pageant!

Good luck and have a fabulous time!

At 5/04/2008 7:26 PM, Blogger Marsha Ward said...

What an opportunity, Sariah! Just drink it all in and return and report.

At 5/05/2008 11:49 AM, Anonymous allyson condie said...

We just moved from that area--Palmyra was our temple. Since we lived so close, we were responsible for ushering during the pageant and just drove up and back the same day, so I don't know much about staying there. Palmyra itself will be absolutely slammed. Are you flying into Rochester? That might be a good place to stay. Either way, it is absolutely gorgeous there. I'm homesick just thinking about it! You will have a wonderful time.

At 5/05/2008 4:44 PM, Blogger Seagulljaap said...


You have a new book coming out? This summer? Is it with Covenant? I haven't heard a thing about it if this is true. It was not in the Covenant sneak peak that they sent us. Keep us informed!



At 5/05/2008 6:41 PM, Blogger Kirk Shaw said...

Good luck, Sariah!

At 5/06/2008 2:56 PM, Blogger Evil HR Lady said...

We go to the pageant every year. Don't plan on having too many spiritual experiences in the Sacred Grove or elsewhere--too many screaming children and mini vans.

We don't generally go to downtown (ha!) Palmyra, but the book store is fairly new and nice. There no selling allowed at the pageant itself. (Other than food vendors, which is done by the locals--church members aren't allowed to sell any food.)

Good luck. Maybe we'll see you there.


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