On Friday, October 1, Ellen Kort, Wisconsin’s first Poet Laureate, will read at 5 pm from her works displayed on the Newport State Park Poetry Trail. There will be a reception at the Newport Visitors Center with Kort reading followed by an open mic. The public is welcome to attend.
Kort is the first distinguished poet to have work posted on this trail. The Poetry Trail at Newport State Park was established this year. It has ten posts with poems under weatherproof covers. The first selection of poems was of members of the Wallace Group, a poetry critique group in northern Door County. The Wallace Group poems will remain up for the month of September. The display of Kort’s work will be up in the park for the months of October, November, and December.
Jack Travis of the Newport Wilderness Society spearheaded the effort to establish the trail and Phil Hansotia, Sharon Auberle, and Nancy Rafal represent the poet community to keep the project going. Hansotia and Auberle applied for and got a grant from the Woodrow Hall Jumpstart Foundation to be used toward the trail project.
“The trail is a great way to combine nature and the art of the written word,” said Hansotia.
The poets of the Unabridged Group will be featured on the trail beginning January 2011. In April 2011 the works of student poets from some local high schools will be displayed.
While funding the first phase of the Poetry Trail project has been successful, continued help is needed to maintain the trail and the poetry. The public can contribute; checks payable to the Newport Wilderness Society can be mailed to Newport Wilderness Society, P.O. Box 187, Ellison Bay, WI 54210. Donations are tax-deductable within the limits of the law.
Newport State Park is on County NP, east of State 42 near Gills Rock. A state park vehicle sticker is required for admission. For more information, call 920.854.2500.