Writers conference has inspiring program

Writers conference has inspiring program An inspiring program of panels, readings, lectures, and social gatherings will be part of The University of South Dakota's John R. Milton Writers Conference on Feb. 20-22. The conference was established in 1998 in memory of USD English professor and South Dakota Review founder John Milton.

This year's conference will bring together a group of poets, fiction and creative-non-fiction writers and scholars from across the United States. They will present panels on topics such as environmental/regional

literature, multi-cultural literature, and editing literary journals, as well as give public readings of their own writings. The writers will also be available throughout the conference to sign copies of books. Dr. Brian Bedard, professor and acting chair of the English department, said a strong multi-cultural dimension characterizes this year's conference.

The Writing Faculty includes Asian American, Native American, and African American poets and fiction writers.

"Even though the conference retains its Great Plains identity through some of its panel topics and through the involvement of several South Dakota writers, the overall theme of the conference is a spirit of diversity and creative opportunity," said Bedard.

Conference participants will have opportunities for writing experiences in workshops offered concurrently as part of the annual Vermillion Literary

Project Poetry Festival. They will also have opportunities to participate in open microphone readings.

The only credentials required of conference attendees are an interest in creative writing and an enthusiasm for literature and the power of the written word. The cost is $20 for the general public and includes two continental breakfasts and Friday lunch.

USD faculty, staff and students may attend for at no cost. There is a $6 fee for the Friday evening banquet that is not included in either registration. Registration deadline is Feb. 8 and interested persons may contact the USD English Department at (605) 677-5229.

The John R. Milton Writers Conference is sponsored by the USD College of Arts and Sciences, the USD English Department, USD Book and Supply, The South Dakota Review, the John R. Milton Foundation, and the Wayne S. and Esther M. Knutson Foundation.

Writing Faculty:

Ed Allen, literature and creative writing teacher at USD, has published two novels and a fiction-writing textbook. He has had short fiction and poetry published in The New Yorker, GQ and several other magazines.

David Allan Evans is a professor of English and writer in residence at South Dakota State University. He is the author of five books of poems and three books of prose.

Robert Roripaugh was appointed Poet Laureate of Wyoming in 1995. He is the author of two volumes of poetry and two novels.

Brian Bedard is professor of English and acting chair of the English Department at USD.

He also directs the creative writing program and serves as editor of South Dakota Review. He has had poems, essays, and short stories published nationwide.

Alyson Hagy is the author of three collections of short fiction and a novel. Her work has been awarded a Nelson Algren Prize, a Syndicated Fiction Prize, a Pushcart Prize, and a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. She teaches at the University of Wyoming.

Lee Ann Roripaugh is an assistant professor of English at USD. Her first volume of poetry, Beyond Heart Mountain, was a 1998 winner of the National Poetry Series. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in several journals.

Diane Glancy is a professor of English at Macalester College in St. Paul, MN, where she teaches Native American literature and creative writing.

Allison Joseph teaches at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, where she serves as poetry editor for Crab Orchard Review. Her first book of poems, What Keeps Us Here won the Ampersand Press Women Poets Series Prize. She

has published two other collections of poetry.

HEAD:Music world premiere to take place at USD

Vermillion music lovers will have the chance to be present at the world premiere performance of A Joyful Noise for violin and harpsichord by USD composer-in-residence, Dr. Stephen Yarbrough. USD professors Dr. Larry Schou and Dr. John Thomson will present a violin and harpsichord recital on Friday, Feb. 15 at 8 p.m. which will include music written as early as the 17th century through to Yarbrough's 21st century piece.

Thomson explains that the harpsichord is often incorrectly thought of as being limited to music of the baroque era. "The repertoire we have chosen for this concert shows the instruments in a wide variety of styles. The earlier pieces are more traditional and classical, while the 20th and 21st century pieces show a dynamic and exciting new style. The music also features the two instruments in different roles. In the different pieces, we both take turns at accompanying or playing the solo line."

The concert will take place in the Colton Recital Hall in the Warren M. Lee College of Fine Arts and is free. The public is invited to attend.

HEAD:Clubs Centerville Christian Women's Club

The Centerville Christian Women's club will gather at the Pascale Memorial Hall on Feb. 13, at 9:30 a.m. for a morning brunch.

"The Painted Prairie" of Sioux Falls will show club members how they create fun and unique gifts of hand painted crocks, piggy banks, and other items.

Amy Wagner, Vale, will address the club. Her life had been a power struggle with God. She will let us know how she has given up control.

To make your reservations for the brunch and free nursery, please call Wilhelmina Jorgenson at 326-5562, Mary Lou Thorson at 563-2678, or Lois Lounsbery at 763-5284 by Feb. 11.

Pick up a friend or neighbor and enjoy the morning.

Coyote Cubs

The Coyote Cubs 4-H club met Sunday, Jan. 20, 2002 at the 4-H Center.

President Shelli Knutson called the meeting to order. The roll call topic was "Your favorite after school snack." The secretary and treasurer's reports were read and approved.

We discussed Ron Thaden's retirement party and the possibility of our club participating in the program. The summer camp dates were reviewed. We discussed ideas for a club project.

Julie Renner did a demonstration on "English muffin pizzas." Casey Carlson gave a demonstration on "accordion sandwiches" and Annie Carlson gave a talk on "salt art."

Hosts were Annie and Casey Carlson.

Our next meeting will be on Feb. 17 at 6:30 p.m.

Tony Hubert, Reporter

Jolly Juniorettes

The Jolly Juniorettes 4-H Club met on January 8 at the 4-H Center Kitchen. President Ellen Kennedy opened the meeting. Tia Krier led the flag pledge and Theresa Dendinger led the 4-H Pledge. Roll call was taken with the statement, "What I want to do when I grow up". Sarah Anderson gave the treasurer's report.

We discussed Ron's retirement reception and took volunteers to bring bars for the open house. We also discussed gift ideas for Ron. Emily and Connie Holoch volunteered to take care of that. We then brainstormed ideas for community service projects. We are to contact organizations and ask what we could do to help out. We made plans to play bingo with the Care Center residents on Saturday, Jan. 12 at 2:15 p.m. Theresa Dendinger will bring crackers and Korry Speakman and Sarah Anderson will bring cheese.

Tia Krier gave a demonstration on "Pretzel O's" and Sarah Anderson gave a demonstration on "Picture Framing". Korry Speakman gave a Home Living judging school.

We then worked on our AIDS quilt square and each member also wrote a thank you to military personnel that Cyndi will mail.

Sarah Anderson and Tia Krier were hostesses.

Our next meeting is Tuesday, Feb. 12 at the 4-H Center. Emily Holoch and Korry Speakman will give demonstrations and Tia Krier will give a judging school. We will have a visitor at this meeting, Zach Holoch, who will also give a demonstration.

Korry Speakman, Reporter

Senior Citizens Center

The last Monday of the month card party at the Senior Citizens Center Jan. 28 had six pitch, 10 pinochle and 12 bridge players.

Bridge prizes went to Shirley Riehle, first; Phyllis Christol, second; and Kathleen Block, low.

Refreshments were furnished by Lola Christensen. Doris Swanson, Herb Christopherson, Garnett Perry and Phyllis Christol won the drawings.

Forty-seven card players (26 pitch and 21 bridge) gathered for a pleasant afternoon at the Senior Center Wednesday, Jan. 30.

Bridge winners were Jack Stewart, first; Margaret Waltner, second; Lola Christensen, third; Shirley Riehle, blind bogey and Marlys Miller, low.

Bob and Gerry Clark furnished the refreshments for coffee break.

Men and women are welcome. Come join us at 1 p.m. every Wednesday � no reservations needed.

Vermillion Rotary Club

Improving instruction and raising student achievement are the main goals of Liz Hogen, the Vermillion Public School's director of instruction, curricullum and staff development who spoke to Rotarians at their noon meeting Feb. 5.

Hogen noted that the Vermillion schools' curricullum is constantly changing.

"We have very active curriculum committees in our district," she said. "We are constantly looking at what we do, and analyzing data."

Hogen said an added challenge to the district are state-mandated curriculum standards that were implemented approximately four years ago. That required the local school district to make efforts to examine their class offerings and make sure they align with the state's requirements.

"We've discovered that our local programs' content is very similar to the state requirements," she said.

Hogen also talked about standardized tests that are used to assess school performance. Students in the Vermillion district take the SAT 9 test. "Standardized tests provide us with generalized tendencies," she said. "The danger is in putting too much emphasis on bit of data."

Students also will be taking a new test � the Dakota Assessment of the Criteria Standards, or DACS test. "This is a test of the state-mandated standards," she said. "The SAT tests are not aligned to our instruction, but the DAX tests should give us that information."

Rotary president Missy Mayfield reminded members again that the president of Rotary International, Richard King, will speak at a district Rotary dinner in Sioux Falls Feb. 13. This will mark the first time a Rotary leader has ever appeared in South Dakota, and Mayfield urged Vermillion members to attend the Sioux Falls event.

Rotary guests included Vermillion High School seniors Jeanette Nygaard, Nicole Pederson, Meggie Paulson, and Katy Pommersheim.

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