African American Read-in - Penn State Altoona

Upcoming Events

African American Read-in 2014

Press Relase | Monday's Agenda | Potential Readings for Monday

2014 African American Read In Logo

You are cordially invited to attend the African American Read-In At Penn State Altoona Community Dinner Program celebrating the twenty-fifth National African American Read-In Chain.

Sunday, February 23, 2014, 4:00 - 6:30 p.m.
Port Sky Café, Penn State Altoona
This year’s theme: Lift Every Voice

Lift Every Voice. Music and literature. The voice and the word. This year’s theme explores and celebrates the intertwined traditions of African American literature and music. We derive the theme from the much beloved Black National Anthem, which was based on the 1899 poem of the same name by James Weldon Johnson and subsequently put to music by his brother. A poem-turned-song is emblematic of the fact that poetry and song not only share common roots but were in fact originally one and the same thing. Also, it symbolizes the deep interconnectedness of music and literature (both spoken and written) throughout African American artistic and cultural expression. This year, let’s celebrate the deep link between voice and word; rhythm and meaning; verses and sounds!

We invite you to participate by sharing a short selection of writing (5 min or less) by an African American author, ideally one inspired by the rich musical legacy of the African American tradition. All manner of musical performance are welcome as well! All readers/performers will receive a commemorative t-shirt; all guests will be invited to choose a book to take home as a gift.

The event is free, appropriate for all ages, and open to the public. But as space is limited, advance reservations are required. Call Carole Bookhamer at 949-5280 or email her at to reserve your seats. We will need the name of each person in your party and a contact phone number. Please let us know of any dietary restrictions and also if you intend to bring children, or a group of children, as we hope to create a special program component for them. Reservations left on voicemail or sent via email will be confirmed with a return phone call or email. Reservations will be taken first-come, first served, until February 7, 2014. After that date, reservations will continue to be taken only if space allows. Once again this year, we expect to have a waiting list, so please notify us if your plans change after making a reservation.

We hope you can join us!