The state Poetry Out Loud finals encourage young people to learn about literature by memorizing and reciting classic American poems.
On Saturday, students from 18 Indiana schools will compete and the public is encouraged to come out and support them. The contest is being held at the Central Library in Indianapolis and gets underway at 11 a.m.
While the competition has been gaining popularity over the past nine years, Sarah Fronczek, Indiana Arts Commission project coordinator, says this year it was difficult for some schools to determine a winner.
"Schools need to hold their own competition first to determine a finalist to attend the state competition," says Fronczek, "and the weather has just created havoc with those competitions being held."
The National Endowment for the Arts and the Arts and Poetry Foundation sponsors the contest. Students must choose a poem from an anthology that the endowment provides.
The state champ will receive $200 and the winner's school will get $500 to purchase poetry books. One Hoosier will move on to Nationals in Washington D.C. with a $20,000 scholarship up for grabs.