The West Virginia Division of Culture and History and the West Virginia Commission on the Arts are announcing that Carolyn Rose Garcia, a senior at Notre Dame High School in Clarksburg, Harrison County, is the state winner of the Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest. Garcia won $200 plus an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. for the national finals April 27-29. In addition, her school will receive a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books.
Jasmine Lewis, a sophomore at Spring Valley High School in Huntington, Wayne County, is the second-place winner. She will receive $100 and her school library will collect $200 for poetry books.
The state finals were held on Saturday, March 15, in the Norman L. Fagan West Virginia State Theater of the Cultural Center, State Capitol Complex in Charleston. Fourteen students from Cabell, Fayette, Harrison, Kanawha, Mason, Nicholas, Pendleton, Raleigh, Roane, Summers and Wayne counties took part in the finals competition. Judges for the West Virginia finals were William F. DeVault, poet, Jamie Dunbar, performance professional and Dr. John McKernan, poet, author and teacher.
Poetry Out Loud is a program sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry Magazine, the oldest English-language monthly publication dedicated to verse. The program is designed to encourage high school-age students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance and competition. John Barr, president of the Poetry Foundation, says “The public recitation of great poetry is a way to honor the speaker, the poem, and the audience all at once.”
For more information about the Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest, contact Jeff Pierson, director of the arts section for the Division, at (304) 558-0240, ext. 717.
The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, an agency of the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, brings together the state’s past, present and future through programs and services in the areas of archives and history, the arts, historic preservation and museums. Its administrative offices are located at the Cultural Center in the State Capitol Complex in Charleston, which also houses the state archives and state museum. The Cultural Center is West Virginia’s official showcase for the arts. The agency also operates a network of museums and historic sites across the state. For more information about the Division’s programs, visit www.wvculture.org. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.
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