"I actually saw kids in my class writing, just writing their thoughts. I think it had a big impact on them."
Karen Benton
Teacher, Our Redeemer Lutheran School

"It's not too good to be true!"
Michelle Oyola
Teacher, South City Preparatory Academy School

"It's an incredible creative outlet."
Lisa Carnehl
Teacher, Salem Lutheran School

"Once they taste that success in one avenue, they want to find out what's the next challenge they can take on."
Maggie Klonsky
Teacher, Marian Middle School

"Students find out that their voice really matters."
Gwyndolyn Savens
Teacher, Gateway Science Academy of St. Louis



"Coming here and reading your poem in front of all these people, lets you know that you're doing something right."
Student, Westgate Christian Academy School

"It just made poetry easier for me."
Student, Oakdale Middle School

"It feels great that you can write down how you feel."
Student, Stevens Center for Academic Development


Community Leaders

"As we sat in the audience, we could feel the words and the emotions touch us personally. That takes a special talent."
Lewis Reed
President of the Board of Aldermen, St. Louis, MO

"People in the audience were legitmately moved by each piece."
Nicky Rainey



"The contest brought a lot of excitement and enthusiasm to our students, particularly for writing. And it's always a struggle to get middle school students to want to write."
Cathy Cassy
Curriculum Supervisor, Grades 6-12th Communication Arts St. Louis Public School District