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WVU Parkersburg hosts special campus events in honor of new literary magazine release

The Poorhouse Rag, a literary review published by WVU Parkersburg, will celebrate the release of its inaugural edition with a reception and multiple campus activities the week of Sept. 30.

This issue of the magazine, titled after the Poorhouse of Wood County, which once stood on college grounds, explores the themes of poverty, mental illness, resilience, survival and overcoming adversity. Students, faculty, staff and alumni submitted writing and artwork representing these themes.

All works, except for those submitted by full-time faculty, were considered for Poorhouse Prizes based on genre. Five awards will be presented to the following individuals during the Poorhouse Rag Literary Reading and Art Show on Wednesday, Oct. 2, from 7-9 p.m., in the college theater (room 1305).

Children’s Literature Prize: Logan Mace for “Cricket’s Song”

Poetry Prize: Victoria Voshel for “A Gift Stolen”

Prose Prize: Lisa Hartline for “The Appalachian Bridge Society”

President’s Prize: Madison Sayre for “Portraits of Mental Illness”

Foundation Prize: Allison Butcher for “Eyes Have It”

Special readings from the issue and an art show are slated with the reception.

“We want to recognize the WVU Parkersburg community and those who contributed to the magazine with special events throughout the week,” Danielle Kelly, member of the Poorhouse Editorial Collective and WVU Parkersburg instructor said. “The entire time, we’ve had students in mind. This project is to give them more of a voice, creatively, that is sometimes hard to express in academic level classes. We also wanted to honor all those people across the country whose life path took them to the poorhouse at one point or another. We don’t want them to be forgotten. Subsequent editions will be dedicated to social justice issues.”

The Poorhouse Week schedule includes the following:

Monday, Sept. 30

10-11 a.m./12:20 – 12:55 p.m./5:30-6:30 p.m.: Tour of WVU Parkersburg campus as it relates to the Poorhouse of Wood County. Tours will be facilitated by WVU Parkersburg students and begin at the main entrance to the college.

7-9 p.m.: Bob Enoch, president of the Wood County Historical and Preservation Society, presents a history of the Poorhouse of Wood County in the college theater. Former WVU Parkersburg Professor of History and West Virginia Professor of the Year (as awarded by the Carnegie Foundation) Bernie Allen will be in attendance and provide commentary via Skype.

Tuesday, Oct. 1

12:20-12:55 p.m.: Pamela Santer, WVU Parkersburg Wellness coordinator, presents Excellence in Disability. Local artists with disabilities will be in the student lounge to showcase their artwork, and the Arc of the Mid-Ohio Valley will have a resource table available for attendees.

Wednesday, Oct. 2

12:20-12:55 p.m.: Bob Enoch, president of the Wood County Historical and Preservation Society, presents a history of the Poorhouse of Wood County in the college theater. Former WVU Parkersburg Professor of History and West Virginia Professor of the Year (as awarded by the Carnegie Foundation) Bernie Allen will be in attendance and provide commentary via Skype.

7-9 p.m.: The Poorhouse Rag Literary Reading and Art Show will be hosted in the college theater. Relics from the Poorhouse of Wood County will also be on display.

Thursday, Oct. 3

12:20-12:55 p.m.: The Poorhouse Rag Literary Reading, issue release and art show for the campus community will be hosted in the student lounge.

Tuesday, Oct. 15 & Wednesday, Oct. 16

Repaint fading names on markers, clean grounds and replace crosses in the Poorhouse Cemetery. Volunteers are welcome. Times to be announced.

Events are free and open to the public.

For more information about The Poorhouse Rag, Poorhouse Week or volunteering, email thepoorhouserag@wvup.edu.

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