Kalamazoo Poetry Festival Press Releases

NEWS RELEASE

MEDIA CONTACT: Julie Barber, Director of Community Connections Kalamazoo Humane Society 269-743-0393 | jbarber@kazoohumane.org

POETS AND POOCHES JOIN FORCES IN FIRST-EVER DOG AND POETRY SHOW: POETS UNLEASHED!

Kalamazoo Humane Society, Kalamazoo Poetry Festival Offer Free Animal-Themed Event

KALAMAZOO, Michigan (May 19, 2017) – Poetry and pooches will connect at the first-ever Dog and Poetry Show: Poets Unleashed! on Wednesday, May 31. Free to the public, this event is sponsored by the Kalamazoo Humane Society, the Kalamazoo Poetry Festival, and Meadow Run Dog Park.

“Poetry is the language of love, and we know this community loves its canine companions,” said Aaron Winters, Executive Director of KHS. “The Dog and Poetry Show is a great way to bring those loves together.

“We’re excited to partner with the Kalamazoo Poetry Festival and Meadow Run Dog Park, a long-time supporter of our work, for this unique event,” Winters added.

Eight writers and poets will be unleashed at the show. They include New York Times best-selling author Mark Nepo, Gail Martin, Elizabeth Kerlikowske, Kathleen McGookey, Lynn Pattison, Margaret DeRitter, Kit Almy and Jennifer Clark. Several KHS board members will also read from the Main Street Rag anthology, To Unsnare Time’s Warp: Stories & Poems about Dogs. Copies of this collection, donated by Main Street Rag, will be sold to benefit the Kalamazoo Humane Society at the event. Michigan News Agency will provide the copies, and attendees can get them signed by the writers.

The Dog and Poetry Show: Poets Unleashed! begins at 6:30 p.m. at Meadow Run Dog Park, 900 S. 8th St, Kalamazoo. Admission is free, and light refreshments are available.

About the Kalamazoo Humane Society: Founded in 1897, the Kalamazoo Humane Society is a non-sheltering animal welfare organization that provides pet population control, humane education and emergency response services to pets, pet owners and other animal agencies throughout southwest Michigan. Find out more at www.kazoohumane.org, or follow KHS on Facebook or Twitter.

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March 1, 2017

For Immediate Release

Kalamazoo Poetry Festival

Contact:

Stacy Nowicki

(269) 767-8229 

Stacy.Nowicki@kzoo.edu

Marsha Meyer, Program Committee Co-Chair

  1. 329-4542 ext. 710

Marion Boyer, Program Committee Co-Chair

(269) 668-7612

m3boyer@@gmail.com

2017 Kalamazoo Poetry Festival to highlight local and nationally known poets

Kalamazoo, Mich. — Kalamazoo Poetry Festival announces its third festival will take place April 28-29, 2017, featuring Pulitzer finalist and Kalamazoo College professor Diane Seuss. During the weekend the festival will offer readings, workshops for youngsters and a panel discussion.

“The festival celebrates the thriving community of writers who contribute to our area’s rich cultural fabric and inspire us to read, perform, and write poetry, “ said Kalamazoo Poetry Festival board chair Stacy Nowicki.

As part of the 2017 festival, the Kalamazoo Poetry Festival invited the Traveling Stanzas: Writing Across Borders project from Kent State University to share the ir collection of poems and to work with local students on a found poem project at the Kalamazoo Book Arts Center.

The festival has also invited a panel of community leaders and local poets to speak about their experiences healing trauma through the power of poetry.

The 2017 festival is scheduled in April to coincide with National Poetry Month. This year’s festival is dedicated to the memory of Conrad Hilberry, a Kalamazoo College  Professor Emeritus who died in January at the age of 88. He wrote 11 volumes of poetry and helped many students and local poets make and publish their poems.

In 2014 and in 2016 the Kalamazoo poetry festival had two-day events. In 2015 it had a single event, a Celebration of Community Poets. This year it will again have a two day event as it shifts its two-day festival to odd-numbered years in response to participants’ requests. “We found that we were competing with other major literary events,” said Nowicki. “We hope by shifting the dates of the event we can accommodate more poetry lovers.”

About the Kalamazoo Poetry Festival

The Kalamazoo Poetry Festival Steering Committee was formed in November 2012 to initiate a new way to celebrate the area’s many poets. In 2014 it became a nonprofit arts organization. The Festival is possible thanks to the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation, its primary funder. Additional support comes from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural  Affairs the National Endowment for the Arts, many individuals and other corporate and organizational supporters.

Artist’s bio

Guest poet Diane Seuss is a 2016 finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Literature for her work Four-Legged Girl. Kalamazoo’s own, she teaches at Kalamazoo College and has played a key role in each of the past three festivals. A beloved poet and teacher who has been instrumental in nurturing the writing careers of so many local poets and students.

EVENTS

FRIDAY, APRIL 28

(All events are in Kalamazoo)

6:30–8 p.m.

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Auditorium, 314 S. Park Street

Celebration of Community Poets and Inspiration Fair

With ASL Interpretation for the deaf

8 p.m.

FIRE, 1249 Portage Road

Your Turn: Open Mic

SATURDAY, APRIL 28

11 a.m.

Kalamazoo Valley Museum, Stryker Auditorium, 230 N. Rose St.

Moving UniVERSE: Youth Animation Project

3–4 p.m.

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Auditorium, 314 S. Park St.

Healing Self and Community Though Poetry: A Panel Conversation

Moderator: Gail Griffin
Panelists: Joe Costello, Michael Evans, Allison Kennedy, Denise Miller

7 p.m.

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Auditorium, 314 S. Park St.

Diane Seuss — Reading & Craft Talk followed by book signing and reception

With ASL Interpretation for the deaf

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Kalamazoo Poetry Festival receives $10,500 from Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs

Jan. 1, 2017

For Immediate Release

Kalamazoo Poetry Festival

Contact:

Stacy Nowicki

(269) 767-8229 

Stacy.Nowicki@kzoo.edu

The Kalamazoo Poetry Festival received a $10,500 grant from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs to provide operational support for the 2017 poetry festival. The grant was awarded through the MCACA peer review process, one of 559 applications from across the state that competed for MCACA fiscal year 2017 funding.

As all organizations receiving a MCACA grant award are required to do, the Kalamazoo Poetry Festival matched the funds with other public and private dollars.

The MCACA peer review process allows for each grant application to be competitively considered by a panel of in-state and out-of-state arts and culture professionals. This ensures the taxpayers, who support this project through legislative appropriations, and all other visitors or residents in Michigan have access to the highest quality arts and cultural experiences.

MCACA strengthens arts and culture in Michigan by increasing its visibility; supporting arts education; encouraging new, creative and innovative works of art; and broadening cultural understanding. A key conduit for arts and cultural information, MCACA is also a source of arts and culture grant funding.

We thank MCACA for supporting us in building an arts organization for present and future generations.

A complete list of grant awards around the state is available from MCACA at (517) 241-4011 or at the MCACA website at bit.ly/MCACA2017 

http://www.michiganbusiness.org/cm/Files/MCACA/2017_Funding_Plan_Program.pdf?rnd=1482863496349

Upon hearing of the award Rep. Jon Hoadley said the state has an important role in supporting the arts as they help create communities people want to visit, live and raise families. “This is of particular importance for small but growing organizations like the Kalamazoo Poetry Festival which are building events that contribute to the rich cultural offerings of the community,” Hoadley said. “The Kalamazoo area is richer as a result of this support through the MCACA.”

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April 4, 2016KPF-Logo-wide

For Immediate Release

Kalamazoo Poetry Festival

Contact:

Stacy Nowicki

(269) 767-8229 

Stacy.Nowicki@kzoo.edu

Marsha Meyer, Program Committee Co-Chair

329-4542 ext. 710

Marion Boyer, Program Committee Co-Chair

(269) 668-7612

m3boyer@@gmail.com

Second Kalamazoo Poetry Festival to highlight local and nationally known poets

Kalamazoo, Mich. — Kalamazoo Poetry Festival announces its second full festival will take place April 15-16, 2016, featuring nationally acclaimed poets Natalie Diaz and Jamaal May. During the weekend the festival will offer readings, craft talks, and workshops led by some of the region’s most celebrated writers.

“We are fortunate to find among us a thriving community of writers who contribute to our area’s rich cultural fabric,” said Kalamazoo Poetry Festival board chair Stacy Nowicki. “The festival celebrates this talent and the creative energy that inspires us to read, perform, and write poetry. “

The event is scheduled in April to coincide with National Poetry Month. As part of the 2016 festival, the number of workshops have been increased from three offerings two years ago to eight in 2016.

Leading the workshops are Jennifer Clark, Margaret DeRitter, Jane Huffman, Fable The Poet (Marcel Price), Elizabeth Kerlikowske, Gail Martin, Preacher C (Cornelius Shaw), and McKenzie Lynn Tozan. A craft talk with Natalie Diaz and Jamaal May will be moderated by Diane Seuss, author of the 2015 poetry collection “Four Legged Girl.”

A reading by workshop leaders, an open mic, and a reading by the guest poets all will be featured.

“It has been exciting to see how the community has responded to our first two events—our first festival in 2014 and the Celebration of Community Poets in 2015,” said Nowicki. “We wanted to provide a showcase for the many talented local poets that we knew were working and writing in this area. The quality of the work presented and the acceptance by the community has been everything we hoped for.”

About the Kalamazoo Poetry Festival

The Kalamazoo Poetry Festival Steering Committee was formed in November 2012 to initiate a new way to celebrate the area’s many poets. In 2014 it became a nonprofit arts organization. The Festival is possible thanks to the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation, its primary funder. Additional support comes from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural  Affairs, many individuals and other corporate and organizational supporters.

Artists bios

Natalie Diaz was born and raised in the Fort Mojave Indian Village in Needles, California, on the banks of the Colorado River. She is Mojave and an enrolled member of the Gila River Indian Tribe. After playing professional basketball for four years in Europe and Asia, Diaz returned to the states to complete her MFA at Old Dominion University. Her first poetry collection, When My Brother Was an Aztec, was published by Copper Canyon Press.  She is a 2012 Lannan Literary Fellow and a 2012 Native Arts Council Foundation Artist Fellow. In 2014, she was awarded a Bread Loaf Fellowship, as well as the Holmes National Poetry Prize from Princeton University, and a U.S. Artists Ford Fellowship. Diaz teaches at the Institute of American Indian Arts Low Residency MFA program and lives in Mohave Valley, Arizona, where she directs the Fort Mojave Language Recovery Program, working with the last remaining Mojave speakers at Fort Mojave to teach and revitalize the Mojave language.

Jamaal May’s book Hum has won the Beatrice Hawley Award, the ALA Notable Book Award, and was a finalist for the NAACP Image award. His second collection is The Big Book of Exit Strategies and he has also published two chapbooks, The God Engine and The Whetting of Teeth. His poetry has appeared in Poetry, The Believer, Ploughshares, New England Review and The Kenyon Review. He has also been a recipient of the Kenyon Review Fellowship at Kenyon College, Bread Loaf, Callaloo and the Civitella Ranieri Fellowship. He is the series editor, graphic designer and filmmaker for the Organic Weapon Arts Chapbook and Video Series.

Friday, April 15

1 – 2 p.m.

Kalamazoo Valley Community College, Arcadia Commons Campus, Downtown

Workshops

• Give Us This Day Our Daily Poetry — Reading And Writing Poems As Spiritual Practice with Margaret DeRitter and Jennifer Clark

• The Poetry of Jamaal May and Natalie Diaz with Jane Huffman

2:30 – 4 p.m

Kalamazoo Valley Community College – Arcadia Commons Campus, Downtown

Workshops

• This Is My Letter to the World: Writing Epistolary Poems with Gail Martin

• You Are The Poem Yet Written: Performing Poetry with Preacher

6 p.m.

Wellspring Theater at the Epic Center, 359 S. Kalamazoo Mall, Downtown 

Reading: Kalamazoo Poetry Festival Workshop Leaders Live

8-9 p.m.

FIRE, 1249 Portage Road, Kalamazoo

Your Turn: Open Mic with Preacher

Saturday April 16

9:30 – 11 a.m.

Kalamazoo College, Upjohn Library Commons

• Your Teeth Feel Like a Road: Writing With Children, in the Classroom and Out with Elizabeth Kerlikowske, Room 305

• Poetry and (Work)Place: Inviting Your Vocation into Your Poetry, with Mckenzie Lynn Tozan, Room 306

• Wanna Get Published? with Kathleen McGookey, Room 308

12:30 – 2 p.m.

Kalamazoo College, Upjohn Library Commons

• Community Building through Local Open Mic Showcases with Fable The Poet, Room 305

• The Poetry of Jamaal May and Natalie Diaz with Jane Huffman, Room 306

• Unlocking the Poet Within: A Workshop for Teens with Jennifer Clark, Room 308

2:30 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Dalton Theatre, Kalamazoo College

Craft Talk and Q&A with Natalie Diaz and Jamaal May, led by Diane Seuss

7 p.m.

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, 314 S. Park St., Kalamazoo

Craft Talk and Q&A with Natalie Diaz and Jamaal May, led by Diane Seuss

The Kalamazoo Poetry Festival is made possible through the generous contributions of the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation, the John E. Fetzer Institute Trust Fund through the Kalamazoo Community Foundation,  Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the arts.  Institutional support comes from Kalamazoo Book Arts Center, Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo Public Library, WMUK and many individual supporters from across the community.