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The Grand Rapids Creative Youth Center to be offering its 2016 Wednesday Workshop Series

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The Wednesday Workshop Series is a collection of fun, imaginative, and inspiring writing workshops, taught by celebrated authors and performers, for students in grades 3-12.
Young writers exploring artifacts for inspiration at the Creative Youth Center

Young writers exploring artifacts for inspiration at the Creative Youth Center /Creative Youth Center

Save the Date for the CYC's Book Launch and Reading at the Wealthy Theatre!

On Wednesday, June 1st, the Creative Youth Center (CYC) will hold its annual book launch and reading for the 2015-16 edition of its annual anthology, The Book of Explosions, at the Wealthy Theatre.  A new edition of The Book of Explosions is published each year by the CYC, and each new edition features the brilliant writings of its talented, and seriously silly, young authors.  Save the date----at the launch you'll get to hear the authors themselves read their work!

The Grand Rapids Creative Youth Center (CYC) excitedly offers its 2016 Wednesday Workshop Series, a collection of fun, imaginative, and inspiring writing workshops, taught by celebrated authors and performers, for students in grades 3-12. 

“Kids and families will be excited about the variety of workshops we have lined up,” says CYC Program Manager Brianne Carpenter.

“From joke-writing to sports writing to writing in hybrid languages, there's something for everyone!”

And while the workshop offerings are exciting, the outstanding workshop leaders are sure to make each writing session worth its weight in buried treasure.

“I think kids and families will also be thrilled at the caliber of workshop leaders we have,” adds Carpenter.

“We have several widely published poets and novelists, two successful comedians, and a sports writer who regularly appears on ESPN. These are the types of teachers that adults clamor to take workshops with!”The workshops will be held on Wednesday evenings, from 6:15 pm to 7:45 pm, at the CYC (413 Eastern Avenue SE).  The first workshop will be on March 23rd, and Registration for all workshops is open to any student who is interested.  The cost to attend each workshop is $15, and there are scholarships available.  For more information, or to register, click here, or call the CYC at (616) 458-5505!

The Creative Youth Center is the only writing-focused arts organization in Grand Rapids. It provides writing workshops and programming for youth ages 6-18.  Offerings at the CYC are driven by the belief that while nurturing kids’ writing can give them access to the world, fostering their creativity may allow them to change the world.  For information on what a day is like at the CYC, click here

Kristin Brace, the CYC’s Executive Director, explains the importance of the CYC’s programming and workshop offerings this way:“Children who are given the chance to express themselves--who are encouraged in exploring their imaginations and sharing their ideas--gain confidence in themselves as essential members of a community.  They see that their voices matter, that their ideas and vision are relevant.”

Carpenter adds, “Part of the CYC's mission is to enable kids to see themselves as writers. The workshops give kids access to small group time to l

earn from and be taken seriously by really accomplished writers, which is an opportunity that a lot of writers don't get until adulthood.”

Sarah-Jean Anderson, renowned artist and comedian, and CYC board member, will teach two of the first workshops in the series, one on writing and telling jokes, and one on writing and performing songs and free-form rapping.“I look forward to these workshops because I think that kids are the funniest people in the world, and their humor is real and totally without the shame that grownups tend to have.  I love to see that absolute pure joy in action…. I love to be in the middle of that creativity,” says Anderson

“I'm a comic now, but I used to be a weird, funny kid, being a weirdo doing weird stuff. Recently I had this thought:  I wonder what it would have been like to be a kid, and have an adult say, ‘Did you know that you can do this when you grow up?’ How amazing would it have been to even know that?”

Anderson isn’t alone in her enthusiasm for the workshops.  As Executive Director Brace puts it, “Students will have the opportunity to learn joke writing and rap writing, writing by erasure and writing in hybrid languages. They will work with poets that celebrate the less organized and less logical in favor of finely wrought emotions, fantastical dreamscapes, and curious musings. Students will be affirmed in their unique voices and ideas. They will walk away from these workshops with a polished draft that excites, surprises, and inspires them to further engage with the written word.”

What could be more worthy of enthusiasm than that?

“The teachers leading these workshops are remarkable, all working writers, artists, and performers with a passion for writing and a special knack for connecting with youth. I truly believe that these are the types of opportunities that open doors, open minds,” adds Brace.

Give young writers the opportunity to open doors and minds, for themselves and those around them, by helping them to sign up for these outstanding creative writing workshops. 

Space for each session is limited, so sign up today!

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