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Rochester – Poetry Sparks! Lines, Lyrics, & Laureates

April 13 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm CDT


Celebrate National Poetry Month with us! Join Minnesota’s Poet Laureate Gwen Nell Westerman and City of Rochester Poet Laureate Jean Prokott for Poetry Sparks! Lines, Lyrics, & Laureates. At this family friendly event, Gwen and Jean will share some of their poetry, and then help you write your own. Contribute to community poetry, visit our creative writing stations, write a poem to give away on poem in your pocket day, and take a chance on mystery poems. Don’t miss this opportunity to create poetry with the Laureates, and have fun while diving into the joy of poetic expression!

This event is presented in partnership with Southeast MN Poets, supporting poets of all ages and stages in their careers. The Southeast MN Poets foster growth, experience, and understanding of the art of poetry through writing, reading, and discussion.

About the Laureates

Gwen Nell Westerman is Minnesota’s current Poet Laureate, and was appointed in 2021. An enrolled member of the Sisseton Wahpeton Dakota Oyate Nation, Gwen is the first Native poet to hold the role of Laureate for Minnesota. She teaches English and Humanities at Minnesota State University, Mankato, and in addition to her 2013 poetry collection “Follow the Blackbirds,” recently published the collection “Songs, Blood Deep”, which has been shortlisted for the 2024 MN Book Awards.

Jean Prokott’s poetry collection “The Second Longest Day of the Year” won the Howling Bird Press Book Prize (Howling Bird Press). She is the author of the chapbook “The Birthday Effect” (Black Sunflowers Press), is a recipient of the AWP Intro Journals Award, and of the John Calvin Rezmerski Memorial Grand Prize with the League of Minnesota Poets. She has poetry and nonfiction published in Verse Daily, Rattle, and Arts & Letters, among other journals. Prokott is the Poet Laureate of Rochester, Minnesota.


Registration is not required for this free event. Families, kids, all ages welcome. Poetry reading will begin at 11:00 a.m. Participants are invited to drop in any time between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.


April 13
11:00 am - 1:00 pm CDT
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Corey China


Historic Chateau Theater
15 1st Street Southwest
Rochester, MN 55902 United States
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