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A very hungry crayon

August 23, 2009 | 10:36 am


Eric Carle, whose hungry caterpillar served as the logo for the L.A. Times Festival of Books earlier this year, will be presented with a special crayon today in Massachusetts. In a public event at Amherst's Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, Crayola will present the children's book author and artist with a 5-foot-tall crayon, in the color they've named Very Hungry Caterpillar Green.

It's the first such award in five years. The last recipient was Oprah Winfrey, who received a "The Color Purple" crayon, which was, not surprisingly, purple.

2009 marks the 40th anniversary of the publication of "The Very Hungry Caterpillar," a book that's both beautiful and -- with the holes the caterpillar "chews" through its pages -- delightfully surprising. It has sold  29 million copies in 45 languages. Creator Carle celebrates his 80th birthday this year.

Attendees will be treated to ice cream and cake and get their own caterpillar-green crayons today only, while supplies last.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Image: "The Very Hungry Caterpillar," by Eric Carle. Credit: Eric Carle / Philomel Books