Poetry out loud finals approaching

High school students from across the territory competing in a poetry competition.

The “Poetry Out Loud” Territorial Finals are March 9 and 10 in St. Croix.

The competition is presented in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and Poetry Foundation, along with the Virgin Islands Council on the Arts.

It is part of a national program that encourages high school students to learn about poetry, through memorization, performance and competition.

The winner will receive $700 and the winner’s school will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry materials.

First runner-up will receive $400 with $200 for his or her school library.

The state champion will receive an all-expense paid trip (with adult chaperoe) to compete in the national finals in Washington DC April 30-May 1.

At the V.I. territorial finals, contestants will recite works they selected from an anthology of more than 900 classic and contemporary poems. The NEA and the Poetry Foundation provide free, standards-based curriculum materials which teachers may use in their classrooms, including an online poetry anthology,a teacher’s guide, lesson plans, posters, and video and audio on the art of recitation. Schools are welcome to download these resources at poetryoutloud.org.

About the National Endowment for the Arts

Established by Congress in 1965, the NEA is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies,and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich anddiverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. For more information, visit arts.gov.

About the Poetry Foundation

The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine, is an independent literary organization committed to a vigorous presence for poetry in our culture. It exists to discover and celebrate the best poetry and to place it before the largest possible audience. The Poetry Foundation seeks to be a leader in shaping a receptive climate for poetry by developing new audiences, creating new avenues for delivery, and encouraging new kinds of poetry through innovative partnerships, prizes, and programs. For more information, visit poetryfoundation.org.

About VI Council on the Arts

Virgin Islands Council on the Arts (VICA) is an agency of the Government of the Virgin Islands within the Department of Planning and Natural Resources. VICA’s mission is “to enrich the cultural life of citizens of the Virgin Islands through leadership that preserves, supports, strengthens and make accessible, excellence in the arts to all Virgin Islanders.”