Vermont Arts Council

Poetry Out Loud

Competitors at the 2018 Poetry Out Loud semifinals.
2024 Vermont Poetry Out Loud State Champion Greer Kennedy of St. Johnsbury Academy
2024 Vermont Poetry Out Loud State Champion Greer Kennedy of St. Johnsbury Academy

The national Poetry Out Loud recitation competition engages thousands of Vermont high school students every year. Created by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, the program provides pathways for students to explore, memorize, and recite great works of poetry. Participation in Poetry Out Loud begins at the classroom level around the country. Contestants choose and learn about poems from an extensive online anthology of classical and contemporary poetry while mastering public speaking skills as well as building self-confidence. Beginning in March, teachers engage students through instruction in poetry and performance and organize contests involving one or more classes. Winners advance to the state finals in the spring, and the state champion advances to the national finals in Washington, D.C.

Since 2023, Vermont Poetry Out Loud has been presented by the Flynn in partnership with the Vermont Arts Council and supported by the Poetry Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the state of Vermont. Greer Kennedy was chosen as Vermont State Champion in 2023 and 2024. In 2024, the Vermont state semi-finals were held at the Barre Opera House on March 7, and the finals were held at the Flynn on March 14. For more information, visit the Flynn’s Poetry Out Loud page.

Vermont Poetry Out Loud Awards for Original Poetry

In 2020, when the Vermont Arts Council hosted Poetry Out Loud, the Council added an original poetry writing competition, in partnership with the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center’s Scholastic Writing Awards.

2022 Winners

2021 Winners

2020 Winners

admin-place July 21, 2022