The mission of the Whatcom Poetry Series is to inspire, broaden, and sustain a strong, interconnected literary community by providing opportunities to experience written and oral poetry.
About the Whatcom Poetry Series The Whatcom Poetry Series is a non-profit organization with two poetry programs. The WPS is one of the main points of contact for the exchange of ideas and information about poetry among individuals and groups within the Whatcom County poetry community.
Poetrynight began as an open mic at Stewart’s Coffeehouse in 1995. It has moved venues several times over the years and now resides primarily in the basement of Bellingham Public Library. One thing that has not changed is poetrynight’s commitment to providing opportunities for new and established writers to share their work. Poetrynight often hosts featured poets as well as awarding the biennial Ken Warfel Fellowship, which awards $1,000.00 to a Washington state poet who has made substantial contributions to their poetry community.
Founded in 2006, the Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest is a free annual event held each spring and open to Whatcom County, Washington, residents of all ages and all levels of experience. From each year’s submissions, two judges, respected Washington poets, select 25 winning poems. Walk Award poems are displayed for a year on the Sue Boynton Poetry Walk in front of the Bellingham Public Library (one of a growing number of permanent poetry installations in the U.S.); beautiful placards of both Walk and Merit Award poems are displayed for a year inside Whatcom Transportation Authority buses that serve routes throughout the county. Winning poets are invited to read at a public awards ceremony in May.
The Whatcom Poetry Series is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.