Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Poetry In You Contest, Summer Poetry Seminars to Be Held at Birmingham Public Library

Roderick Woods has been hosting free Poetry In You workshops at various Birmingham Public Library (BPL) locations and city schools for 14 years.

This summer, the Birmingham native is taking his passion for teaching young people the benefits of honing their poetry and spoken word skills to the next level in partnership with BPL and the Bessemer Public Library. In addition to several free poetry workshops being offered at three area libraries, on July 23, Woods will be hosting the first Poetry In You Contest at the North Birmingham Regional Branch Library. The winners will receive $1,000 in cash, gifts, and prizes.

The poetry contest in two divisions—ages 7 to 12 and 13 to 16—will be open to the first 80 entries, Woods said. The theme “Global Warming, My Future” is designed to get young people to learn research skills about an important topic that affects everyone, Woods said. Participants can sign up on the Poetry In You Facebook page or contact Woods for details at 205-260-0326.

“Our goal is to unearth the love of poetry in our young people, help them learn to articulate through the spoken word, and build self-esteem,” Woods said. “The contest is open to the general public, but if you want to learn tips on writing, you need to sign up for one of our workshops.”

The Poetry In You Summer Poetry Seminars will be as follows in June and July and are free to 20 participants per session:

North Birmingham Library – Starting June 1, Monday-Thursday, 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Snacks provided and two field trips.

Smithfield Branch Library – Starting June 3, Fridays and Saturdays, 12:00-2:00 p.m.

Bessemer Public Library – Starting June 3, Fridays and Saturdays, 9:00-11:00 a.m.

The Poetry In You Contest and Summer Poetry Seminars are being sponsored by the following: Superspandious Poetry Inc., Col. Paul Cajun Seasonings, DNT, Tri Fab Steel, Birmingham Coca Cola Bottling Co. United, Wingout Express, Highway 11 Recycling, Pride Line (STS), North Birmingham Regional Library, Bessemer Public Library, Smithfield Library, and Sweet Tea Restaurant. If you would like to help sponsor this program, call Woods at 205-260-0326 or e-mail him at

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