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Teen Poetry Workshop Seeks Sponsor For Field Trip

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By BVN Staff –

The momentum for Catherine Key-Williams' Teen Poetry Workshop, which kicks off their seventh year in July, and invites teens and adults to participate.

Key-Williams, an author since 1995, said she was almost living at the Moreno Valley Public Library; she was there so often reading. She also was planning a curriculum for the Teen Poetry Workshops. In 2004, she had an idea. One day that year, she went to the library counter and spoke with the librarian, who later arranged for the space and time availability. Each year since then, Key-Williams has organized workshops targetting at aspiring poets between 12 and 18, but open to people of all ages. The eight-hour workshops, started at noon on July 7 at the Perris City Public Library, are free.

"The overall goal is to instill with a passion the desire for youth and adults to be able to write and ultimately write stage plays," Key-Williams said. "We also thrive to teach the students to write and self-publish their own stories."

The series also invites local poets and authors to speak, including Jean Denny, Anna Christ ian, Richard Harry and Richard O. Jones. Jones, a presenter in the series since its inception, wrote the play "The Last Emancipation," which workshop students can attend for free and incorporate into their learning.

The Teen Poetry Workshop seeks help from the community businesses, churches, charitable clubs, or individuals to sponsor the approximately 20 teens for the play. Tickets are $20 - $30 and $40. This theatrical field will be the first time most of the students have been to a profession stage play.

"It's educational and it's humorous," Jones said. "It 's about slaves that are still working in today's world like Aunt Jemima and the Cream of Wheat man and Uncle Ben. They get together and want to be emancipated because they've been working 100 years without getting paid, and it gets into the history of how they got on the boxes."

The play runs at 7:30 p.m. on July 21 to 22 at the Lewis Family Playhouse in Rancho Cucamonga. For more information regarding sponsoring the Teen Poetry Workshop to see “The Last Emancipat ion” call Catherine Key-Williams at (951) 254-4208.

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