Free poetry workshops and events, especially ones targeting the youth, continue to grow at the Birmingham Public Library. Check out this list of future programs:
- Family Creative Arts Night, an arts and poetry program for children and parents, will be held on Monday, December 17 at 6 p.m. at North Birmingham Library, 2501 31st Ave. North. This event will be lead by a husband and wife team. Call 226-4026 to register. A Family Poetry Night will be held on Tuesday, December 18 at 6 p.m. at Springville Road Library, 1224 Old Springville. This class will be lead by two Real Life Poet Inc. facilitators. Call 226-4085 to register.
The classes are sponsored by Birmingham Parent University, the Birmingham Education Foundation, Real Life Poets Inc. and the Birmingham Public Library.
Advance registration is appreciated. Light snacks will be served. To register, go to www.bhamparentu.com, call the listed library numbers or register in person at the two listed libraries. More family events like these will be held at Birmingham library branches in 2013.
- Flow Tactics Teen Open Mic is held every third Saturday, 6 to 8 p.m., at the YMCA Youth Center, 2400 Seventh Ave. North. Admission is free. The next one will be held on Saturday, December 15. This event is for high school students. To sign up to perform or for more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Flow Tactics is sponsored by Real Life Poets, Inc., the Mayor's Office Division of Youth Services, YMCA Youth Center, the WORD UP! Student Poetry Slam Committee of the Jefferson County Library Cooperative and the Birmingham Public Library.
- Bards & Brews, the popular poetry performance/beer tasting series, is usually held the first Friday of each month from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at various locations in Birmingham. The next session, which will be a poetry slam, will be held on January 4, 2013, at the Central Library, 2100 Park Place. Slams are held quarterly; the other sessions are open mic. The event opens with live music at 6:30 p.m., and poetry performances start at 7 p.m.. Brian “Voice Porter” Hawkins serves as emcee. The program is free and open to the public.
Craft beer will be available for sampling. Light refreshments will be served. Attendees must be 18 years or older to be admitted, and 21 years or older to be served. IDs will be checked. This program is funded in part by the Alabama State Council on the Arts. For more information, call 226-3670.
- Gifts of a Wordsmith, an adult poetry workshop, is held every first Tuesday of the month, 6 to 8 p.m., on the second floor of the Central Library, 2100 Park Place. John Paul Taylor of Real Life Poets, Inc. is the coordinator. For more information, call Taylor at 585-8271 or email him at email@example.com.
- The WORD UP! 2013 Poets Showcase will be held on Saturday, January 12 at 2 p.m. in Arrington Auditorium of the Linn-Henley Research Library. Tessica "Lady Tess'' Williams will be the headliner. She is the the first place winner of the 2012 Southern Fried Poetry Slam, which was held in June.
- Flow Tactics Teen Poetry Workshop is held the first Saturday of every month, 2 to 4 p.m., on the second floor of the Central Library, 2100 Park Place. John Paul Taylor of Real Life Poets, Inc. is the coordinator. For more information, call Taylor at 585-8271 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- WORD UP!, an annual poetry slam competition for high school students in Jefferson County, will be held on Sunday, April 7, 2013, at 3 p.m. at the Central Library, 2100 Park Place.
Students will compete in competitions at their schools. Winners from each school will face off at the annual WORD UP! competition at the downtown Birmingham library.
The 2013 theme will be civil rights in honor of the 50th anniversary of the civil rights movement in Birmingham. Students will be asked to choose from one of six civil rights-themed photos selected by the WORD UP! committee. Students will use their selected photo as the inspiration for their performance. The program is funded in part by the Alabama State Council on the Arts. For more information, call 226-3670.
- Voices From the Storm: Our Spirit Will Not Be Broken Anthology, a collection of poems, essays, prose, photos, and artwork that looks at the effects of the April 22, 2011 and Jan. 23, 2012 tornadoes, will be released in late 2012. Entries were written by Jefferson County residents of all ages, including students. Real Life Poets, Inc., the Birmingham Public Library, the Birmingham Museum of Art and the Jefferson County Library Cooperative helped with publication. For more information, call 226-3670.