Wyoming Arts Council

Poetry Out Loud State Finals to be held March 5 at Cheyenne Civic Center

Finalists prepare to compete in Wyoming’s 2017 Poetry Out Loud State Competition.

The Wyoming Arts Council will host the Poetry Out Loud State Finals Competition on Monday, March 5th at 7 p.m. at the Cheyenne Civic Center, 510 W 20th Street.

Awards will be announced at a ceremony on Tuesday, March 6 at 10:30 a.m. in the lobby of the Barrett Building, 2301 Central Avenue. The public is invited to attend both events.

Poetry Out Loud (POL) is the national recitation and memorization contest sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation. Designed specifically for students in grades 9-12 attending public, private or home schools, the POL program is a fun way to teach and learn language arts standards through poetry.

Students first compete at the classroom and school levels before participating in the state finals competition. Each school champion will recite 3 poems. Wyoming’s state champion will receive $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., to compete at the National Finals. The state champion’s school will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. The first runner-up will receive $100; his or her school will receive $200 for the purchase of poetry books.

This year’s judges for the state competition are Colorado poet Adrian Molina, Wyoming poet Matt Daly, Wyoming’s Poet Laureate Eugene Gagliano, and University of Wyoming student and past Poetry Out Loud contestant Sara Ellingrod. The event will be emceed by Wyoming Public Radio’s Education Reporter, Tennessee Watson.

Poetry Out Loud builds on the resurgence of poetry as an oral art form, encouraging the nation’s youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and performance. Students can work on mastering comprehension, public speaking, acting, performance, drama and English skills while building self-confidence and internalizing our rich literary heritage.

For more information, please contact Tara Pappas at tara.pappas@wyo.gov.

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