National Poetry Month Workshop and Showcase

In recognition of National Poetry Month, the Young Lions Roar will hold a Poetry Summit on April 15 from 12:00-6:00 at Two Rivers United Methodist Church. The summit will culminate in a Showcase at 7:00 p.m. that is open to the public, featuring students and professional poets of the Young Lions Roar program.

Young Lions Roar is led by Aubrey Barnes, a published poet, educator, spoken-word artist, and rapper. Barnes, known as Aubs as an artist, grew up in Rock Island and is the curator of the Roaring Rhetoric series of open-mic events at Rozz Tox in Rock Island. These monthly events are standing room only fixtures of the local art scene.

The Poetry Summit will feature three educators and professional creatives who will work with students from 12:00-5:30. Chris Britton will lead the workshop from 12:00-1:30. Christina Baker will lead the workshop from 2:00-3:30. Emit Phillips will lead the workshop from 4:00-5:30. There will be snacks and breaks in between workshops, and dinner for the students as they prepare for the showcase at 7:00.

At 6:45 p.m. the sanctuary of Two Rivers Church will be open to the public for a showcase that starts at 7:00 p.m. Two Rivers Church is at 1820 5th Avenue, in Rock Island. The show will feature the young talent as well as some of the professional poets. The show will be free admission. There will be snacks for sale and donations can be made to Young Lions Roar to support the ongoing afterschool programs.

Young Lions Roar is about helping young people find their roar through poetry, rap, and spoken-word performance. Students are able to express their emotions and process their anxieties, joys, frustrations, and fears through the medium of writing. The Young Lions meet at Two Rivers Church on Mondays and Tuesdays from 3:30-6:00. A shuttle for rides from RIHS to Two Rivers is available. Aubs hosts a workshop at Rock Island High School every Wednesday in the new commons.

There is no cost for the summit, but students are encouraged to register at the Programs page at . Parents and students who are interested can also email Aubs at