THOUSAND OAKS : Festival to Promote Poetry Awareness

The 1995 East Ventura County Holiday Poetry Festival will be held in December to promote awareness of local poets.

The festival is set to begin at 8 p.m. Dec. 8 at The Poetry Shop in Thousand Oaks, where the dozen winners of the Conejo Valley Poetry Society will read their winning poems. The holiday festival is sponsored by the Conejo Valley Poetry Society, a nonprofit organization.

On Dec. 9, a poetry hike on the Oak Creek Canyon Trail will feature cowboy and nature poetry by Gary Robertson, a Hidden Valley poet who was selected this year’s national cowboy poet of the year by Horsemen’s Gazette magazine, and other poets. The hike--led by naturalist and poetry society director John P. Gorham, who will also read cowboy poems--will begin at 10 a.m.

A poetry reading featuring poets emphasizing literary poetry is scheduled to take place at 8 p.m. Dec. 11 at Roxannes Coffee & More in Simi Valley. The host for the reading will be Ron Reichick, editor of Verve magazine.


A poetry discussion group is to be held at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 13 at the Poetry Shop in Thousand Oaks. The discussion will be followed by open-mike poetry readings at 8:30 p.m.

The festival’s closing event will be at 8 p.m. Dec. 15 at the Poetry Shop. Reading Christmas poems will be Michael and Judy Collings. Michael Collings is head of the creative writing department at Pepperdine University in Malibu and Judy Collings is head of the music department at Glenwood Elementary School in Thousand Oaks.

For more information on the holiday festival or the Conejo Valley Poetry Society, call John P. Gorham at (800) 994-9220.