The Chicago Poetry Center is now in its 5th year as Chicagoland Regional Host Organization for the national youth poetry competition, Poetry Out Loud.
In February 2022, teens from Chicago area city and suburban schools competed in the Chicagoland regionals for a spot at the statewide Poetry Out Loud poetry recitation competition and a chance to advance to the national competition in Washington DC in May to win $20,000!
In our second year of conducting the national event remotely, students were able to submit videos of their recitations to be judged by our panel. The first and second places from each region (city and suburbs) then progressed to the Illinois state competition level. The Illinois State Contest featured recitations by two students from each of eight Poetry Out Loud regions in the state: Central, Chicago-City, Chicago-Metro, Eastern, Northern, South-central, Southern, and Western.
Judges Panel for the 2021 Chicagoland Regionals were:
Chicagoland area Poetry Out Loud Coordinator: Timothy Rey, poet, educator
- Davon Clark, poet, teaching artist
- Leslie Reese, poet, teaching artist
- Joy Young, poet, teaching artist
Scorekeeper: Daniel Rey, Microsoft trainer
Accuracy Judge: Kelsey Wright, poet, teaching artist