Poetry Rolls is a traveling poetry project. Founded in 2017 in celebration of Lancaster hosting the Pennsylvania Governor's Awards for the Arts, this mobile poetry playground features a van covered in magnetized words and plenty of volunteers and fun activities.
Poetry Rolls began as a collaboration between the Writers House, Go Welsh design studio, and Heidi Leitzke of the Millersville University Art Department.
Imagine a poem stitched into a quilt that is hung in the window of the Lancaster Quilt Museum near Central Market, or an automated auditory poem activated by passersby while the Pennsylvania College of Art & Design glows in the growing dusk. Imagine poems inscribed on and in large-scale sculpture as well as custom sidewalk inserts you can follow across the city.
Poetry Paths is a public visual and literary art project founded and produced by the Philadelphia Alumni Writers House at Franklin & Marshall College with funding from the Lancaster County Community Foundation. The goal of Poetry Paths is to bring enduring and inspiring poetry and visual art into people’s everyday lives through both poetry programming in public schools and community centers AND a city-wide public art project. Poetry Paths in the Schools sponsors poetry writing workshops for three hundred children annually in Lancaster’s public elementary and middle schools. Poetry Paths in the Streets, the public art project, introduces poetry’s words into the Lancaster streetscape by installing art that features poetry throughout the city.
Poetry Paths is envisioned by the Philadelphia Alumni Writers House of Franklin & Marshall College, funded by the Lancaster County Community Foundation and Franklin & Marshall College, and produced by the Writers House with support from the City of Lancaster Public Works Department and the Office of the Mayor.
Started in the fall of 2013, the Creative Writers Corps was made up of dedicated Franklin & Marshall student interns who lead creative writing workshops for elementary, middle, and high school students throughout the Lancaster community. Interns developed their own lesson plans to introduce their students to the world of writing, encouraging them to come up with a body of work they can share with their peers and families at the end of the year. Lessons included workshops in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, each created by the Franklin & Marshall interns for their individual classes. Members of the Corps have gone on to get degrees in teaching and creative writing, work for Teach for America and City Year, and to establish volunteer programs of their own.
Each semester, CWC students lead workshops after school in 4-6 schools and community centers, including Fulton, Ross, Burrowes, Wharton, and Martin Elementary and Reynolds Community School, as well as The Mix at Arbor Place, Bright Side Opportunities Center, and the North Museum.
Creative Writers Corps has transformed into the Community Writers Corps, a group made of Writers House staff and volunteers who organize programming both in the Lancaster School District and on campus. These students are responsible for Poetry Rolls, workshops with the Phillips Museum of Art, and many other writing opportunities.