Poetry Out Loud Contest Comes to SBU February 24

Since 2006, The National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation have sponsored Poetry Out Loud, a contest that encourages the nation’s youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and recitation. The Long Island Regional Competition for this national recitation contest will be held at Stony Brook University on Monday, February 24, at 5 pm in the Charles B. Wang Center Theater. The event features winners from the following high schools:

Bayport–Blue Point High School
Crescent School
Deer Park High School
Harborfields High School
Herricks High School
Hicksville High School
Jericho High School
John F. Kennedy High School
Knox School
Locust Valley High School
Memorial Junior High School
Professional Performing Arts School
Sanford H. Calhoun High School
Smithtown High School East
Smithtown High School West
Syosset High School
W.C. Mepham High School
West Babylon High School

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact Ann Ozelis at (631) 632-4360 or Ann.Ozelis@stonybrook.edu or visit poetryoutloud.org.

SUNY is facilitating this year’s contest, with several campuses in addition to Stony Brook hosting regional competitions, including Binghamton, Brockport, Clinton Community College, Cobleskill, Fashion Institute of Technology, New Paltz, Niagara Community College, Oneonta and Onondaga Community College. The top two finalists from each of these regional areas will then compete in the State Finals — to be held at SUNY System Administration in Albany on March 4 — for a chance to represent New York in the National Finals in Washington, DC, April 28 through April 30.

“SUNY campuses are ideal settings for community events like this, and we are thrilled to be opening up our facilities and providing an opportunity for students, faculty and staff to volunteer as part of this spirited competition,” said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “Poetry Out Loud is a valuable and enriching experience for all involved and an important component of SUNY’s K-12 partnerships and Vibrant Communities initiative. Thank you to our partners and volunteers across the state, and best of luck to the competitors.”

More About Poetry Out Loud
Poetry Out Loud helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence and learn about their literary heritage. The program uses a pyramid structure that starts at the classroom level. Winners advance to a school-wide competition, then to a regional and/or state competition and ultimately to the National Finals.

Each winner at the state level receives $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip with an adult chaperone to Washington to compete for the national championship. The state winner’s school receives a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. The first runner-up in each state receives $100, with $200 for his or her school library. A total of $50,000 in awards and school stipends is awarded annually at the National Finals.

Poetry Out Loud featured on CBS

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