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Fox News
Fox News
5 Aug 2023


FIRST ON FOX — Police in Huntsville, Alabama prevented a crowd of protestors from disrupting a story hour featuring actor-author Kirk Cameron and former NCAA swimmer Riley Gaines on Saturday. 

A group of protestors outside the Madison Public Library reportedly attempted to enter the event, which was hosted by the organization Moms for Liberty as part of the "See You at the Library" series of book readings on August 5. Some protestors held signs that said, "Ban hate, not books," and "Ban bigots."

Inside the library was an overflow crowd of adults, parents and children trying to enjoy the book reading, which went off relatively smoothly, Fox News Digital is told early on Saturday afternoon.

'PROTECT OUR FREEDOMS': WHY A PASTOR'S WIFE AND A MOM OF 2 ARE HEADING TO THE LIBRARY ON AUGUST 5

Cameron started off his event at the library with the "Pledge of Allegiance." Then he led the group in singing "God Bless America," with many parents and kids holding hands over their hearts during the song.

The event at the Madison Public Library had previously been canceled, then re-scheduled, purportedly due to capacity concerns. 

Two people holding signs

A crowd of protestors gathered in Huntsville, Alabama, to protest a scheduled book reading by actor-author Kirk Cameron and women's sports advocate Riley Gaines on Saturday, August 5.  (Kirk Cameron/Brave Books)

On Friday, the library acquiesced and rescheduled the event after law firm First Liberty Institute sent a letter to the library system saying it was "prepared to vindicate this violation of our client’s civil rights in court."

After agreeing to host the event, the library system issued a statement saying the meeting would be accommodated, with a hard limit put on the number of attendees. 

"In the interest of public safety, Madison Police and the Madison Fire Marshal will be on hand to manage any logistical needs," said the library. 

NATIONWIDE 'SEE YOU AT THE LIBRARY' EVENT ON AUGUST 5 ALREADY GETTING PUSHBACK: 'FIRE IN THE HEARTS'

Cameron's publisher, Brave Books, there were 225 attendees at the event — the maximum capacity for the room agreed upon with the library system. 

Local police reported there were about 100 protestors outside the library, according to Brave Books, which cited Chief Johnny Gandy of the Madison Police Department. 

crowd of people including Kirk Cameron

Kirk Cameron (left) and Riley Gaines (center) pose for a picture amid a capacity crowd at the Madison Public Library on Saturday, August 5.  (Kirk Cameron/Brave Books)

"See You at the Library" was inspired by actor-writer Kirk Cameron and his book publisher. 

The nationwide series of events aims to bring together Americans from all walks of life to their public libraries. 

People on Saturday are reading books and stories centered on faith, family and country. 

The events are planned at more than 300 libraries in 46 states, according to Brave Books. A map is available showing where people can find events in their area. 

BRING BACK ‘WHOLESOME, TRADITIONAL AND PATRIOTIC VALUES’: WHY 3 GROUPS ARE HEADING TO THE LIBRARY ON SATURDAY 

Cameron, speaking to Fox News Digital in a phone interview earlier this week, said, "Conservatives and Christians have complained that they don't have a seat at the cultural table" in America in recent times. 

Now they do, he said.

Other event organizers told Fox News Digital that they were excited to meet with like-minded members of their community at their local book readings. 

women holding signs

Protestors are shown outside the "See you at the Library" event in Huntsville, Alabama, on Saturday, August 5. The "Growing Pain" sign is a reference to the 1980s TV show "Growing Pains," which starred Kirk Cameron.  (Kirk Cameron/Brave Books)

"Our freedoms are so crucial to protect, so when I heard of a way to do this at my local library and join the movement, I was on board," said Lauren Mauk, president of Mommy's Haven Maternity Home in Lowell, Indiana, and a mother of two. 

As a parent, Mauk said it was "imperative" to her that "our kids hear and learn biblical and patriotic principles (at all ages) but also beginning at a young age." 

The books published by Brave Books are able to share these principles "in a beautiful way that’s entertaining for kids to read and listen to," she said. 

"We love to read to our kids and love having a brand that we can trust to align with our values and Christian morals," she said. 

Christine Rousselle is a lifestyle reporter with Fox News Digital.