UPDATED: Writers Groups Host Poet Laureate Event

| October 6, 2015 | 0 Comments | Arts & Entertainment
June Forte with  Zan Hailey and Robert Scott as they are announced as Prince William County's Poets Laureate.

Prince William writer June Forte honors Zan Hailey and Robert Scott as they are announced as Prince William County’s Poets Laureate.

Updated, Oct. 7, 2015, at 11 a.m.:

In recognition of “In the Company of Laureates,” the five-state gathering of award-winning poets at the Hylton Center for the Performing Arts, Sunday, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan sent a greeting.

Additionally, all Virginia teachers will receive five recertification points for attending the event.

Duncan’s letter will be read from the stage at the opening of the event.

In it, Secretary Duncan expresses his support for “a well-rounded curriculum that includes the arts.”

Original Story: 

This weekend, local poetry lovers may find themselves “In the Company of Laureates,” if they choose to attend the Sunday afternoon gathering at the Hylton Performing Arts Center.

Co-hosted by Write by the Rails: the Prince William Chapter of the Virginia Writers Club and the Poetry Society of Virginia, “In the Company of Laureates” brings together more than 20 current and past Poets Laureate from Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia in celebration of American poetry at the Hylton Center for the Performing Arts on October 11 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The event will give poetry lovers the chance to meet and mingle with award-winning laureates, regional poets and poetry enthusiasts. Workshops, panel discussions, open mics and book signings are just some of the activities scheduled during the event. There are also teen program scheduled throughout the afternoon.

The event is free and open to the public.

Seminars to be held during the “In the Company of Laureates” event includes:

Spotlight on the U. S. Poets Laureate: Selected profiles of the nation’s official poets and their poetry from 1937-2015. Presented by Sara Robinson: Author, poet, columnist for Southern Writers Magazine and instructor of Contemporary American Poetry for the University of Virginia’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (UVA/OLLI).

Words On War: Military veterans Dr. Frederick Foote, Bill Glose and Jim Mathews join Claudia Gary, former Vietnam Magazine senior editor, to share their writing and examine the role creative expression has as a coping mechanism and as an element of the healing process for service members with PTSD and traumatic physical injuries. Dr. Foote will also discuss the Green Road healing garden, the Walter Reed arts program, and the Maryland Network of Arts and Gardens for Veterans. Jim Mathews, an instructor and editor with the Veterans Writing Project, will talk about its mission and goals.

Inspiration and Experimentation: Delaware Poet Laureate JoAnn Balingit and Virginia Poet Laureate Emerita Sofia Starnes will read from their poetry and discuss the seeds of inspiration. Prince William Poet Laureate Zan Hailey and Virginia Poet Laureate Emerita Carolyn Kreiter-Foronda will share their thoughts on experimentation in poetry.

In honor of the event, the Prince William Board of County Supervisor’s has named Oct. 11 “Poet Laureate Day,” during its Oct. 6 meeting.

In the Company of Laureates even flyer

In the Company of Laureates even flyer

Prince William itself has two poets laureate. Poet Laureate Dr. Robert Scott is a Prince William County educator, the former principal of Brentsville District High School and author of thrillers “15 Miles” and “Asbury Park,” among other popular published works. He currently teaches as Osbourn Park High School.

Poet Laureate Zan Hailey is 2015 graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University and former graduate of Woodbridge Senior High School, the Center for the Fine and Performing Arts, specializing in writing.

Scott is collecting 10,000 poems from Prince William residents as part of his laureate community project, while Hailey is workshopping using music and art as inspiration for poetry and vice-versa.

This is the first time the organization has held such an event that invites several poets laureates together for one celebratory event.

For additional information, readers are invited to visit the In the Company of Laureates event website.

The Hylton Center is located at 10960 George Mason Circle on George Mason University’s Science and Technology Campus in Manassas, Virginia.

 Adapted from a press release sent by June Forte of Write by the Rails. 

© 2015, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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