QVCC’s Poetry Celebration to be Held at Julia de Burgos Park on April 25

Author and poet Joseph Bruchac will be the featured guest at the 11th annual Julius Sokenu Poetry Prize Celebration, sponsored by Quinebaug Valley Community College, on Wednesday April 25. This year’s event will be held outdoors at the Julia de Burgos Park, located at the corner of Jackson Street and Terry Avenue (Poet’s Corner) in Willimantic and starts at 4:30 pm.

In case of inclement weather, the event will be held in the auditorium at Windham Middle School, 123 Quarry Street in Willimantic.

The Julius Sokenu Poetry Awards honor the best student poetry in England and Spanish at QVCC and Quinebaug Middle College. The event, free and open to the public, will feature a reading by Bruchac, award-winning student poets, and open mic participants. Sandwiches, chips, sweets, and cool beverages will be provided.

Bruchac has been creating poetry, short stories, novels, anthologies and music that reflect his Native American heritage and traditions for over 40 years. He has received numerous honors for his work, including the American Book Award, the Boston Globe Book Award, a National Endowment for the Arts Writing Fellowship for Poetry, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Native Writers Circle of the Americas. His poems, articles, and stories have appeared in over 500 publications, from American Poetry Review, Cricket, and Aboriginal Voices to National Geographic, Parabola, and Smithsonian Magazine. Bruchac resides in in the Adirondack foothills town of Greenfield Center, New York, in the same house where his maternal grandparents raised him. He, his younger sister Margaret, and his two grown sons, James and Jesse, continue to work extensively in projects involving the preservation of Abenaki culture, language and traditional Native skills, including performing traditional and contemporary Abenaki music with the Dawnland Singers.

For more information contact Jon Andersen, professor of English at, Elkin Esitia-Loaiza, professor of Spanish, at, or M’lyn Hines, reference and instruction librarian, at Audience members are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and warm jackets.

Released April 10, 2018