Wick Poetry Center relocates along Esplanade Extension

Danielle Hess

The Wick Poetry Center will relocate to the historic May Prentice House at the beginning of the new Esplanade extension in Spring 2014.

Tom Euclide, vice president of Facilities Planning and Operations at Kent State, said the house has been moved from Willow Street to the corner of the new Esplanade extension and is currently being placed and renovated.

Euclide said the new location will include a park and amphitheater.

“It’s in a good location, and I think students and community members will take advantage of that,” Euclide said.

The Wick Poetry Park will be built next to the house and will include an interactive display of poetry. Poems by the Traveling Stanzas will be placed in permanent holders throughout the park and changed frequently to display different artist’s work.

The poetry park will be built surrounding the Professor Edwin S. Gould Amphitheatre. The amphitheatre holds as many as 40 people and features a 12-foot bronze statue called “Seeded Earth.” Robert Wick, a co-founder of the Wick Poetry Center, sculpted the statue.

David Hassler, director of the Wick Poetry Center, said the new facility will be the first of its kind in the country to have an interactive poetry park in conjunction with the house.

“It’s so appropriate for the house to be on the Esplanade because it’s so close to the town and the gown,” Hassler said.

Hassler said he’s excited that the Wick Poetry Center can finally be a point of destination.

“Community members and schools can use the house for formal and informal poetry and writing,” Hassler said.

Hassler said that the house will include a lower-level digital classroom, administrative offices and a poet’s loft.

“We want people to hear the voices of our community and walk into the May Prentice House to have their own ideas heard,” Hassler said.

The poetry house and park have received funding and support, but fundraising for the Wick Poetry Center outreach program is ongoing.

Contact Danielle Hess at [email protected].