CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA (March 2002) – AlbemarleKids is proud to bring Mike L. Ford, local author of historical novels for kids of all ages, to Motheread Fatheread Day of Virginia Festival of the Book on March 23 at — a.m. He will be signing copies of the Spring Magazine which features the debut of a brand new short story series for children set in Charlottesville, ” The Adventures of Bumble the Bee & Friends”.

The series is published in the popular kids section of the Magazine, Bumble’s Clubhouse Corner (formerly ?The Kid?s Clubhouse Times?, now entering its third year). The story idea was conceived of as a way to entertain children with a story about our hometown and to encourage them to become more active readers and writers. In a unique collaboration, the story is charmingly illustrated by area schoolchildren who also create original poems and games to accompany the tale. Watch in the future for special episodes written by kids, too.

Families will be able to read more ?Adventures of Bumble the Bee and Friends? in the complimentary online Clubhouse where they can also listen to stories by Peter Jones of Tell Us A Tale, WTJU 91.1 and play games. is a local publishing company for families both online and in print and an active partner for the third year with Virginia Festival of the Book family events in keeping with the AK mission to “Make Parenting Easier & Growing Up Fun!”

“The Best Way to Go to Sleep” by Mike L. Ford

…It was a beautiful, sunny day in early spring. All morning Annabelle and Charlie the Goose had chased each other around the pond. Have you ever chased a goose? It can really wear you out! Annabelle lay down to rest for a while in the field, but not for long, because along came her old friend, Bumble the Bee. Now, Bumble had been sleeping all winter, and this was his first day out in the sunshine. His wings were stiff and he was very hungry after his long nap, so Bumble was eager to fly around and find some nice, sweet flower nectar to eat…


I was born at Martha Jefferson Hospital in 1975 and grew up in North Garden, VA, attending local schools until heading up to Brown University in Providence, RI. After college, I moved to NYC, where I worked as a community organizer for ACORN, a national non-profit, community development organization. That was followed by a hectic, hazardous year as a bike messenger and then a stint as Center Director for a subsidiary of Kaplan Educational Services. Eventually, I became a writer/editor for SABIS Educational Systems, producing historical novels for kids of all ages around the world. I have been doing that for three years now, in addition to pursuing personal writing projects about everything from Blackbeard the Pirate to life in early-20th Century Pittsburgh steel towns. After a couple years living and working in Atlanta, my wife Holly and I moved back up to Virginia. We now live in beautiful Greene County with our two dogs Hank and Stella. Beginning in April, 2002, I will be launching a small publishing company in Charlottesville, creating customized resource/teaching materials for Language Arts and Social Studies curricula (grades 3-10), homeschool materials, as well as children’s books and local after school programs.

Mike L. Ford 1181 Sylvia Ridge Rd. Dyke, VA 22935 434-990-2077 Anyone is welcome to email me at [email protected]


We are a small local publishing company serving families in Charlottesville-Albemarle. Our goal is to be a parent?s ultimate resource whether they are looking for great activities for the kids, a parent support group, daytrip ideas, or extensive guides to local family services. Our popular weekly web site debuted online in 1998 and now serves over 13,000 visitors a month. In addition to the web site, we publish a monthly e-Newsletter and quarterly print publications, which include three Magazines and the annual Directory of Family Services. also has a “live” presence in the community that you will discover when you look through any of our publications and see drawings and poetry from local kids, families creating art with us for our AlbemarleKids Care Exhibits at festivals, area schoolchildren actively engaged in helping to create our Bumble’s Clubhouse Corner, and more.

FOR MORE INFORMATION about AlbemarleKids publications, please call (434)984-4713, or email us, or visit our virtual offices at