A group of Fredericksburg moms concerned about age-inappropriate content in kids’ books hosted a book fair this week stocked exclusively with wholesome, family-friendly titles.

The Gillespie County Chapter of Moms for Liberty partnered with SkyTree Book Fairs, a new book fair vendor affiliated with faith-based publisher BRAVE Books.

SkyTree is a Texas-based company created last year to compete with Scholastic.

Scholastic is the world’s largest publisher of children’s books and has dominated the book fair market for decades. But in recent years Scholastic has intentionally pushed books that expose children to sexual content and promote “LGBTQ” ideology.

SkyTree thoroughly vets all its books to ensure they are age-appropriate for kids and feature themes that reflect traditional family values.

“It’s so nice to hear parents come in and say they don’t have to worry about what’s in the books, trusting that the books are appropriate,” said local mom Janna Olivares, who volunteered to work the book fair.

Olivares said many of their customers have been homeschool and private school families.

Fredericksburg mom Tara Petsch, the Texas Ambassador for Moms for Liberty and head of the Gillespie County chapter, organized the event.

Two years ago, Petsch started pressing her local school district to remove explicit books from her children’s school libraries.

Petsch said she invited every librarian in Fredericksburg ISD as well as the superintendent to attend the book fair.

“Parents are hoping our school district and local private schools will have SkyTree book fairs,” said Petsch. “We’ve shown them some of the books that Scholastic has had at local book fairs and the parents were appalled. They do not want social and political agendas pushed on their young children.”

School districts across the country are flocking to the new company. SkyTree is reportedly booked solid for 2024.

Besides offering books with wholesome content, Petsch said another positive of SkyTree over other book fairs is that customers pay no sales tax. Donors cover the taxes, making the purchasing process easier for kids and hosts.

As with other fairs, teachers can earn books or money based on their sales.

Petsch said that their fair was already a big success, with one more day to go.

“Our SkyTree book fair has been amazing!” she said. “We have sold hundreds of books. The community has been so excited to have a book fair with age-appropriate content for their children.”

The book fair runs through Friday, March 8, at the Fredericksburg Church of Christ.

Moms for Liberty is a national organization with more than 250 local chapters across the country.

Erin Anderson

Erin Anderson is a Senior Journalist for Texas Scorecard, reporting on state and local issues, events, and government actions that impact people in communities throughout Texas and the DFW Metroplex. A native Texan, Erin grew up in the Houston area and now lives in Collin County.