2019 NH Poetry Out Loud regional semi-finals begin 2/19

High school champions from across New Hampshire are gearing up for the 2019 Poetry Out Loud program semi-final competitions that will take place in the coming weeks. Top performers will advance to the state championship, vying for the opportunity to represent New Hampshire at the national competition in Washington, D.C.

This year, approximately 10,000 students from 42 high schools and high school groups participated in the program which begins at the classroom level and moves on to school competitions, followed by the state semi-finals and championship.

New Hampshire’s state championship is scheduled to take place March 15 in Representatives Hall at the State House in Concord, which is celebrating its 200th anniversary this year.

Students participating in Poetry Out Loud not only learn great poems by master poets, but also sharpen their public speaking and presentation skills, making them stronger candidates for positions both in the workforce and in higher education. Participants consistently report that learning and reciting poetry is an experience that changes their lives. More than 350 volunteers serve as judges, scorers and in other supporting roles each year, making it an event that brings communities together.

Poetry Out Loud is organized nationally by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, and is led in New Hampshire by the N.H. State Council on the Arts.

There is no cost to compete and all materials are provided to enrolled schools.

A map of participating schools is available from the Poetry Out Loud section of the State Arts Council’s website, nh.gov/nharts.

New Hampshire’s semi-final and state championship competitions are free and open to the public.

Locations, dates and times for the semi-finals are:

-       Rochester Opera House; Tuesday, February 19, 6 p.m.
-       Jean’s Playhouse in Lincoln; Thursday, February 21, 6 p.m.
-       Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester; Monday, March 4, 6 p.m.
-       New England College in Henniker; Tuesday, March 5, 6 p.m.

Snow dates and parking information for these events are available at nh.gov/nharts.

Each state’s Poetry Out Loud winner receives $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip with an adult chaperone to Washington, D.C., 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. A total of $50,000 in awards and school stipends is awarded annually at the National Finals.
New Hampshire’s Poetry Out Loud supporters include the Putnam Foundation – a donor-advised fund of the N.H. Charitable Foundation – and the New Hampshire Learning Initiative. Other partners include the Poetry Society of New Hampshire, Granite State Ambassadors, the Frost Place, Slam Free or Die, the New Hampshire Writers Project and New Hampshire Public Radio.

To learn more about 2019 New Hampshire Poetry Out Loud, view the calendar of high school competition dates, or find out how your school can be involved, go to
nh.gov/nharts and click on the Poetry Out Loud button. For additional information, contact Julianne Gadoury, New Hampshire State Council on the Arts at 603-271-0791, julianne.gadoury@dncr.nh.gov.

The New Hampshire State Council on the Arts is a division of the New Hampshire Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. It began in 1965 with legislation designed “to insure that the role of the arts in the life of our communities will continue to grow and play an ever more significant part in the education and welfare of our citizens.” Funding for programs is provided through state appropriations, a partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Conservation License Plate fund. Learn more about the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts at nh.gov/nharts.


Book of the Week (2/11/2019)

Parenting Across the Life Span by Linda E. Powers (Bloomington, Ind.: iUniverse, 2018).
"Parenting takes many twists and turns as we invest our energy into nurturing others. There will be wonderful surprises and proud moments interspersed with times of intense worry, sadness, frustration, and disappointment. Linda E. Powers, who raised three daughters and is a child and adolescent psychotherapist, educator, and former pediatric nurse, helps parents make sense of it all in this guide for helping children of all ages-from infancy into adulthood. She outlines theories of social and emotional development, the importance of mental health during pregnancy, how heredity and environment contribute to temperament, how to improve a toddler's speech through verbal interactions, the power of play and pretend, ways to help children understand right versus wrong, and how to navigate interactions with adult children. Parenting can be a more positive experience if we understand the developmental process, have good communication tools, and use effective strategies to manage stress while spending quality time with our families. Get meaningful insights to nurture future generations (as well as yourself) with the guidance in 'Parenting across the Lifespan'."--Publisher's blurb.
Linda E. Powers, a licensed clinical mental health professional, has worked as a therapist with many children and families. She is a former pediatric and triage nurse, and currently is an adjunct faculty member at Manchester Community College in Manchester, NH. She is a graduate of a three year nursing program, and has earned a bachelor of science degree in psychology and sociology, and a master's degree in counseling psychology. She is a mom to three adult daughters and a grandmother to five.

Join Linda at Gibson's Bookstore on Thursday, February 21, 2019 at 6:00 pm where she will be presenting her new book!


Book of the Week (2/4/2019)

The Third King: Coronation by Brian D. Campbell (New Boston, N.H. : Red Cliff Press, 2018).

This is NH author Brian Campbell's first book, which is an intriguing thriller with bits of history thrown in for good measure.
"Ben Gilsum, a gifted math and history major at John Brown University in Arkansas is recruited by a private-government contractor to be an Intelligence Analyst. He decides to seek membership in a local secret society to volunteer time for his new community and make social connections. The organization is founded on twelfth-century scripts that reveal a scene shared in every Christmas tale has a remarkable ancient twist. During his initiation into the organization, Ben learns that anyone connected to power or influence in Washington DC is currency and nearly everyone he meets in his new home is connected in some way to exploit him."-- Back cover.
Join Brian at Gibson's Bookstore on Wednesday, February 13th, 2019, at 6 p.m. for "Local Author Discovery Night"!


Book of the Week (1/28/2019)

A Cathedral of Myth and Bone by Kat Howard (Saga Press, 2019).

New Hampshire author Kat Howard debuts a new collection of fantasy short stories.
In these stories, equally as beguiling and spellbinding as her novels, Howard expands into the enchanted territory of myths and saints, as well as an Arthurian novella set upon a college campus, “Once, Future,” which retells the story of King Arthur—through the women’s eyes.

Captivating and engrossing, and adorned in gorgeous prose, Kat Howard’s stories are a fresh and stylish take on fantasy. “Kat Howard seems to possess a magic of her own, of making characters come alive and scenery so vivid, you forget it exists only on the page” (Anton Bogomazov, Politics and Prose). -- Publisher's blurb.
Join Kat Howard at The Toadstool Bookshop in Milford, NH where she will discuss her new book on Saturday, February 22nd, 2019 at 2 pm.