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Dyer Rhoads is the 2013 Maine State Champion
Presidential Inaugural Poet Richard Blanco has announced Dyer Rhoads of Waynflete School as the 2013 State Poetry Out Loud Champion. Blanco, who presented signed copies of his inaugural poem to all the finalists, went on to announce Iman Omar, from Deering High School, as the State Runner-up. Both students will receive cash awards and their schools will receive prize money to purchase poetry books for their libraries.
After surviving classroom, school wide and regional level competitions, ten state finalists gathered at the Gracie Theatre in Bangor to recite three rounds of poetry from memory in front of television cameras and a packed audience. Dyer Rhoads was ultimately selected as state champion and will represent the State of Maine at the National Poetry Out Loud Finals on April 28-30 in Washington, D.C.
Rhoads impressed a top panel of judges to become the 2012 State Champion reciting three poems during the competition: "Onions" by William Matthews, "Break of Day" by John Donne and "The Windhover" by Gerard Manley Hopkins.
The Maine Arts Commission thanks all the students that made the 2013 competition an amazing event:Iman Omar - Deering High SchoolChristian E. Heath - Gardiner Area High SchoolSkyler Samuelson - Merriconeag Waldorf High School Jai Aslam - Messalonskee High SchoolIsabelle Fall - Mt. Ararat High SchoolAbigail Abbott - Rangeley Lakes Regional SchoolBrianna Housman - Searsport District High SchoolMorgan Wiggan - Thornton AcademyBethanie Brown - Waterville Senior High SchoolDyer Rhoads - Waynflete School
Poetry Out Loud is a national program organized by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation and administered at the state level by the Maine Arts Commission. The competition begins in Maine's schools where school champions are selected to compete in two regional finals at which ten students are ultimately selected to appear at the state final. One student moves on from the state final to represent Maine at the national finals in Washington D.C., where students from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico will compete for a total of $50,000 in awards and school stipends for the purchase of poetry books.
For more information about Poetry Out Loud, please contact Darrell Bulmer, Communication Director at the Maine Arts Commission, at 207/287-6746 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.