6th Annual Black History Month Read-In

The Racine Public Library, in collaboration with Find the Light LLC, Resilient by Design Healing & Consulting, LLC, The Racine Literacy Council, Coming Together Racine, Family Power Music and the BONK! Arts and Culture series invites you to The Sixth Annual “Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes Memorial Black History Month Read-In”.  This event will be held virtually on Thursday, February 25th from 6 til 7:30pm.

A Black History Month Read-In is an event where community members of all different backgrounds join together to celebrate the vibrant legacy of black contributions to world literature.  Fifteen community members will be given 5 minutes each to read a piece (or an excerpt of a piece) of writing written by someone from the black diaspora.  

Because the purpose of this event is to highlight the copious, diverse contributions of all black people to literature, and because we want to illustrate the great breadth of those contributions as much as possible in one and a half short hours, we will not be having ANY repeats of authors. This is a unique aspect of Racine’s BHM read-in and has been the practice since it was first founded in 2016.

To “attend” this event, community members are encouraged to go to the BONK! Facebook page, where it will be live streamed and where viewers dialogue in the comments section.

About the name of this event: Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes were two prominent black women residents of Racine who were inspirations both in the Racine community locally, as well as the literary community nationally–Mary as an ambassador and literary agent and Marcie as a writer herself and supporter of the arts.  They have both gone on to join the elders, Mary in 2014 and Marcie in 2015.  Shortly before Marcie passed away, she was chosen as one of the finalists for the Racine Poet Laureate position.  We are honored to be able to celebrate these two women as leaders of both Racine’s Black Community, as well as Racine’s Literary Community.

This event is made possible by the sponsors of the BONK! Arts and Culture series: The Racine Public Library, the Racine Community Foundation, the Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation, the Friends of the Racine Public Library, and Olde Madrid restaurant.  

For questions, please contact one of the 2021 Co-chairs of the BHM Read-in Committee: Genie Webb-Mitchell, author and owner of Find the Light LLC, at genie@findthelightbooks.com or 262-497-0059 or Nick Demske, Racine Public Library’s Community Resources Librarian, at nick.demske@racinelibrary.info or 262-631-0021.

BONK! 136 Goes Digital with Still Waters Collective

Over the past 20 years, Still Waters Collective has
influenced more than 14,000 youth, trained dozens of arts practitioners, curated
hundreds of performances and workshops for spoken word and storytelling, and
designed capacity building fellowships for new leaders and seasoned creatives.
“Our very first open mic amounted to five people sharing poems across a bar table,”
says SWC founder, Dasha Kelly Hamilton, who was recently named Poet Laureate for
the City of Milwaukee. “Every initiative since has been about creating space for people
and their stories. Poetry slams, anthologies, workshops and community projects have
all, always, only been tools for building community, capacity and confidences.”
The weekly open mic grew to hold national regard, attracting touring poets and
performers from across the country. SWC revived Milwaukee’s poetry slam community,
reconnecting the city to an international competition and launching local poets and
spoken word performers into national scenes. SWC was invited to create poetry
curricula for elementary classrooms and, then, after school programming for middle and
high schools, earning recognition for Best AfterSchool Programming by the school
district. The signature SWC youth programs were a High School Slam League,
connecting as many as 16 high school teams every season; the Scholastic Writing
Awards of Milwaukee, connecting young scribes to the nation’s oldest arts contest for
teens; the Junior City Slam, in-class residencies to strengthen the muscles for listening
with empathy and the bravery to be heard; and post-secondary leadership training and
professional development through internships and fellowships. Last year, SWC piloted
a professional development fellowship coaching creatives for the fields of cultural
organizing, art intervention strategy and community vitality.

The anniversary celebration will stream live, Wednesday, May 20 from 4am until
Midnight at The Retreat MKE on YouTube and Still Waters Collective on YouTube and
Facebook. The 20 hour tribute will broadcast new programming and archive footage,
and live writing workshops, guest visits and performances, erotic poetry, live DJs sets
and a virtual open mic. Throughout the day, viewers will be asked to make
contributions in $20 increments. Proceeds will be shared between the non-profit and all
of the artists and alumni performing, speaking and teaching throughout the day.
“These first two decades were all about us, the folks who poured ourselves and words
into this incredible container of spirit and curiosity and healing,” says Kelly Hamilton,
who volunteers as the organization lead. “Our next decades will preserve Still Waters
Collective as an institution and a ready network for human and social wellness.”
Founded in 2000, Still Waters Collective, the mission of SWC is to leverage the craft of
creative writing and the art of spoken word to build confidences, capacity and
community. Contributions can be made through PayPal/Still Waters Collective.

BONK! 135 – Fifth Annual “Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes Memorial” Black History Month Read-In

The Racine Public Library in collaboration with The Dr. John Bryant Community Center for the Arts, Family Power Music, Coming Together Racine, The Racine Branch NAACP, and the BONK! Performance Series invites you to The Fifth Annual “Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes Memorial Black History Month Read-In”.*  This event will be held in the Adult Services Department of the Racine Public Library, near the east windows, on Wednesday, February 26th from 6 til 8:30 pm.

A Black History Month Read-In is an event where community members of all different backgrounds join together to celebrate the vibrant legacy of black contributions to world literature.  Readers are invited to take 5 minutes to read a piece (or an excerpt of a piece) of writing written by someone from the black diaspora. Audience members will be treated to words of some of the most accomplished minds in human history. All will be sure not only to hear from some well-known favorites but also to learn of some authors you’ve likely never heard of before.

Send any further questions to Nick Demske at nick.demske@racinelibrary.info or 262-631-0021.

See you there!

*About the name of this event: Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes were two prominent black women residents of Racine who were inspirations both in the Racine community locally, as well as the literary community nationally–Mary as an ambassador and literary agent and Marcie as a writer herself and supporter of the arts.  Mary went to join the elders in 2014 and Marcie’s homegoing was in 2015. Shortly before Marcie had passed away, she was chosen as one of the finalists for the Racine Poet Laureate position. We are honored to be able to celebrate these two women as leaders of both Racine’s Black Community, as well as Racine’s Literary Community.

BONK! 134 @ Racine Public Library

This month, BONK! will be forgoing the traditional performance lineup and instead hold a pot-luck style event at the Racine Public Library at the second floor East windows for the National Day of Racial Healing from 5pm until 7:30pm.

Sharing a meal is one of the most ancient and bonding acts two human beings can do together. Sharing a dish from your specific culture, history or family can even be a more special act.

Join us at the table and break bread together as we gather in observance of National Day of Racial Healing. Feel free to bring a dish to share and if possible a clear list of ingredients for our patrons with specific dietary needs. Free and open to the whole Human Family regardless of race, age or culture.

Perseverance Through Poetry: Dan Scheidell

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An award ceremony recognizing Guest of Honor Daniel Scheidell’s use of poetry to overcome an extraordinary ordeal and help others discover poetry’s power.

You are cordially invited to join us at 7pm on Friday, November 30th at the Rhode Theater in downtown Kenosha for cocktails, hors-d’oeuvres, and a moving evening of poetic fellowship. Semi-formal attire optional.

More about Dan:
Dan was wrongly convicted in Racine and incarcerated for two decades before being exonerated with the help of the Wisconsin Innocence Project. During that time, he used poetry as a lifeline to keep his hope alive. Learn more here and chip in https://www.gofundme.com/danscheidellpoetry

This event is sponsored by the Kenosha-Racine Poets Laureate Program.

3rd Annual Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes Memorial Black History Month Read-In

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The Racine Public Library in collaboration with The Dr. John Bryant Community Center for the Arts, Family Power Music, Coming Together Racine, The Racine Branch NAACP, and the BONK! performance series invites you to The Third Annual “Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes Memorial Black History Month Read-In”*.  This event will be held in the Adult Services Department of the Racine Public Library, near the east windows, on Thursday, February 22nd from 6 til 8:30pm.

A Black History Month Read-In is an event where community members of all different backgrounds join together to celebrate the vibrant legacy of black contributions to world literature.  Here’s how it will work: anyone interested in signing up is given 5 minutes to read a piece (or an excerpt of a piece) of writing written by someone from the black diaspora.  

Because the purpose of this event is to highlight the copious, diverse contributions of all black people to literature, and because we want to illustrate the great breadth of those contributions as much as possible in two and a half short hours, we will not be having ANY repeats of authors.  Sign up fast so you can be sure you’ll get to read from the author you want to celebrate most!

To respect everyone’s time, there is a limited number of only 20 spots we can fill.  Anyone is welcome to sign up, but do so now because spots won’t last.  To sign up, please RSVP with the following information:

  1. Your name, e-mail and phone number
  2. If you are younger than 21, your age
  3. Name of your Author
  4. Name of the piece you’ll be reading from
  5. If your piece is child appropriate or not (this will help us decide where in the evening to slot you

Please RSVP or send any further questions to Ciara Hartzog at ciarahartzog@gmail.com or contact Nick Demske at 262-631-0021.

See you there!

*About the name of this event: Mary Finley and Marcie Eanes were two prominent black women residents of Racine who were inspirations both in the Racine community locally, as well as the literary community nationally–Mary as an ambassador and literary agent and Marcie as a writer herself and supporter of the arts.  Mary went to join the elders in 2014 and Marcie’s homegoing was last year in 2015.  Shortly before Marcie had passed away, she was chosen as one of the finalists for the Racine Poet Laureate position.  We are honored to be able to celebrate these two women as leaders of both Racine’s Black Community, as well as Racine’s Literary Community.

Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets Calendar – Submission Opportunity

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  • The theme for the 2019 calendar is “Celebrating Wisconsin People,” which includes Native Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans, European Americans, Spanish-Speaking Americans, Bi-racial and Multi-racial Americans.
  • Shorter poems have a better chance of getting in. I want to include as many poems as possible.
  • To aid me in publishing as many as possible, there will be a strict 30 line limit, including stanza breaks. Lines longer than 60 characters count as 2 lines.
  • Poems celebrating inclusions, racial and cultural diversity will have a slight advantage. Poems should also be accessible as the calendar speaks to not just other poets but to all of the people in Wisconsin.
  • Submissions are open to all with a connection to Wisconsin, but strong preference will be given to those who are year-round (or almost year-round) residents.
  • Poems will be accepted in other languages, as long as an English translation is also submitted. There is a 15 line limit for each version (30 line limit in total).
  • Send no more than TWO poems, previously published is ok, but credit publisher and include year of publication.
  • Poems should arrive between September 1 and December 1, 2017. Poems before September 1 or after 11:59pm on December 1, 2017, will not be considered.
  • Email 1-2 poems in one (1) Word or Word-compatible file (no PDFs) to: 2019wfoppoetscalendar@gmail.com.
  • If you prefer, you may mail poems to: James Roberts, 324 Kedzie Street, Apt. 30, Madison, WI 53704. He will type and email to me. Include a stamped, self-addressed envelop for him to send you your final version.
  • Include, with email or mail submission. a short bio; a strict 30 word limit will be enforced.

For more information go to www.wfop.org 

9th Annual Dan Jam

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Saturday, June 24, 2017 | 2pm-10pm
Johnson Park Pavilion | 6200 Northwestern Ave. Racine, WI 53406
$10 or $8 with 2 Non-Perishable Food Items
(4 Food Tickets and 1 Drink Ticket w/ Paid Admission)

Gather your friends and family and spend the day with us at the 9th Annual Dan Jam – The Family Reunion Music Festival! Enjoy tons of live music, kids/family activities, and food/drink at a marvelously beautiful park!

The Dan Jam Music Festival celebrates the life and passions of Daniel “Hawk” Conner, who died in an auto accident on June 27, 2008, at age 26. Deeply devoted to helping others, Conner worked with area youth in a variety of programs — from the YWCA and River Bend Nature Center to after-school programs and Thoughts for Food’s All Ages Event — teaching them to swim and canoe, coaching various sports, and more.

Families are invited to come and have fun in honor of Conner’s love of music, and the many gifts he shared with people of all ages throughout the community. 

Be The Next Kenosha/Racine Poet Laureate

The Kenosha/Racine Poets Laureate Program is seeking applications from June 1 through August 5, 2017 for the position of Racine Poet Laureate. The Poet Laureate serves as an ambassador for poetry, encouraging creative expression and literacy, while celebrating the power and beauty of language in the greater Racine area. The person in this position writes and shares their work in public appearances, workshops and exhibits, and engages the public to find and share their own voice.

Applications and more information are available at the Racine Public Library, online at the Library website, www.racinelibrary.info and on the Left of the Lake website, www.leftofthelake.com. Completed applications and supporting documents should be delivered to the Racine Public Library, Poet Laureate Program,  75 7th Street, Racine, WI 53403 or sent to poets@leftofthelake.com. Questions on applying or on the program should be directed to Nick Demske of Racine Public Library at nick.demske@racinelibrary.info or (262) 619-2570.

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age by November 1, 2017 and reside in Racine County, including its city, towns and villages. They need to have access to reliable transportation, either public or private, and agree to maintain residency in Racine County during the term of appointment to this position.

Dependent on availability of funds and approval of the program’s committee on their use, the Poet Laureate may attend conferences, seminars and workshops and/or finance their creative project, along with other items related to the purpose of the Program. The Committee strives to obtain adequate funding for the Program through grants and donations.

This is the fourth time that a Poet Laureate will be crowned in Racine. Past recipients include Darin Zimpel and Stephen Kalmar II (2011-13),  Nick Ramsey (2013-15), and Jessie Lynn McMains (2015-17).  The program’s committee also appoints the Poet Laureate of Kenosha and encourages the poets from both communities to work together to further the mission of the program.

The program is made possible through the Racine Public Library and Kenosha Public Library, in cooperation with Left of the Lake, LLC, a small press publisher, arts magazine, and art gallery, showcasing the work of artists and authors from southeastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois.

Get bEHIND the aRTS Studio Tour 2017

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The 7th Annual get bEHIND the aRTS Studio Tour is an event celebrating the arts and artists of the Racine-Kenosha area.

The tour provides a rare, behind-the glimpse of the working artist. This year’s tour includes more than 45 visual and performing art studios where more than 85 artists are at work. The Racine area studio tour (includes 16th Street Studios, 1405 16th St. and the Racine Arts Council, 409 Sixth St.) is 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. The Kenosha area studio tour is 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.  Suggested donation is $5 at any location – the button is good for admission to all locations both days.

Maps and details at http://getbehindthearts.org

The 2017 sponsors are: Racine Community Foundation, Racine Art Museum, Real Racine, Kenosha Area Convention & Visitor Bureau, Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation, Andy Meyer & Chris Hefel, Rivals Sports Pub & Grill and Benjamin Beer Co.

  • Location: 1405 16th Street, 16th Street Studios, WI
  • Phone:(262) 880-4549
  • Time:11:00 AM to 5:00 PM
  • Price:$5 Suggested donation, Kids free