Maine Poetry Out Loud
Maine Poetry Out Loud header image


The Maine Arts Commission is proud to partner once again with the National Endowment for the Arts to give Maine schools the opportunity to participate in Poetry Out Loud in 2019-2020.

About Poetry Out Loud

Poetry Out Loud is a national arts education program that encourages the study of great poetry by offering free educational materials and a dynamic recitation competition to high school students across the country. This program helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about literary history and contemporary life. Poetry Out Loud is sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation.

How it Works

Once you register with us, involvement in Poetry Out Loud starts at the classroom level. We’ll provide educational materials and resources to help get you and your students started. Winners advance to a school-wide competition, then to regional and state competitions, and ultimately to the National Finals. Awards and placements are determined solely by the judges’ scores based on the Poetry Out Loud Evaluation Criteria.

Poetry Out Loud Awards

Each winner at the state level receives $200 and an all-expenses-paid trip with an adult chaperone to Washington, DC to compete for the national championship. The state winner’s school receives $500 for the purchase of poetry materials. The first runner-up in each state receives $100, with $200 for their school. At the national finals, a total of $50,000 in awards and school stipends is awarded annually.

Please visit the national Poetry Out Loud site to explore and learn more about this great program.

Key Dates

September 10, 2019         Registration Opens

Decemeber 1, 2019          Registration Deadline 

February 3, 2020               Northern Maine Regional Finals (snow date February 4)

February 10, 2020             Southern Maine Regional Finals (snow date February 11) 

March 2, 2020                   Maine State Finals -- Waterville, ME (snow date, March 3)

April 28-29, 2020              National Finals – Washington, DC

For more information about Poetry Out Loud, please contact Brita Wanger-Morier, Performing Arts & Media Director at the Maine Arts Commission, at 207/287-2750 or by email at Brita.Wanger-vog.eniam@reiroM.

Below is the registration form for the Regional Finals - student and poems information.

Both the school winner and runner-up must complete this form. The registration deadline is Friday, January 17, 2020.