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National Slam Qualifying Event

Winner, Jewel Rodgers

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Jewel Rodgers will represent Nebraska 

at the BlackBerry Peach National Slam Poetry Competition!

Nebraska Poetry Society is paying for her berth and meals

We need your help to cover funds for her hotel and flight. 

You can donate here or through the QR code. Thank you!

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The competition was tight! 
We had to use a tie breaker becasue there was a three-way tie for second place!
2nd Place: Bianca Swift
3rd Place: Sharieff
4th Place: Esman Rodas-Calderon

Thank you to our Guest Judges!

Aaron Scobie, Chad Christensen, Courtney Kilroy, Ben Wenzl, Stephanie Marcellus

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Aaron Scobie writes about their childhood in Alabama from their home in Omaha, while their son, Fox, runs about. They are currently a Graduate Student and Instructor at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.

Ben Wenzl has represented Omaha a record eight times at the National Poetry Slam. He has also competed twice at the Individual World Poetry Slam. He is a teaching artist for All Writes Reserved (coaching high school slam poetry). His work has appeared in 13th Floor Magazine and Rattle.


Chad Christensen is the managing editor of the WSC Press and the director of the Plains Writers Series. He has an MFA from the University of Nebraska Omaha and teaches writing and publishing at Wayne State College. His books of lo-fi poetry are "Ground Bound" and "Shoot from the Hip." He once wrestled a grizzly bear with Neil Harrison.


Courtney Kilroy is a poet, library professional, and fiber artist based in Omaha, Nebraska. They have a background in slam poetry and organizing community programming around the poetic form. In their art practice and work as a librarian, they seek to encourage curiosity, celebrate inherent goodnesses, and speak to the universalities in unique human experiences.

Stephanie Marcellus is a professor of English at Wayne State College. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Colorado State University and a PhD in Nineteenth-Century British Literature from The University of South Dakota. Her work has appeared in Plainsongs, Three Drops from a Cauldron, Alligator Juniper. Her newest book "How to Say," will be released in April. She lives in Wayne, Nebraska with her husband, two cats, and dog. She enjoys spending time on the family farm, being out in nature, and finding time to read in her hammock.

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BlackBerry Peach National

Slam Poetry Competition

June 5th – June 10th, 2024

at: DoubleTree Hilton
Roswell, GA

The National Competition is limited to 44 of the top spoken word poets from across the country. It is held by the National Federation of State Poetry Societies (NFSPS) and sponsored by the Georgia Poetry Association (GPA).


The Nebraska Poetry Society has reserved and paid the Berth for the winning poet from the NPS National Slam Tryouts. The winning poet will also receive a meal stipend and we will assist the winning poet in fundraising efforts to cover hotel and travel expenses. If you would like to help donate to send the NPS National Slam Winner to Blackberry Peach, please click HERE 


First Place: $2,000

Second Place: $1,000

Third Place: $500

Fourth Place: $250

Fifth-Twelfth Place: $125

Sacrificial poet will receive $100


BlackBerry Peach National Slam Poetry Competition Itinerary

     Wednesday, June 5, 2024
          2:00 p.m. | Slam orientation
          6:30 p.m. | Prelims (Bouts 1 and 2)
          8:30 p.m. | Prelims (Bouts 3 and 4)
          10:30 p.m. | Themed Open Mic


     Thursday, June 6, 2024
          6:30 p.m. | Prelims (Bouts 5 and 6)
          8:30 p.m. | Prelims (Bouts 7 and 8)
          10:30 p.m. | Themed Open Mic


     Friday, June 7, 2024
          11:00 p.m. | NUPIC

     Saturday, June 8, 2024
          6:30 p.m. | Haiku Slam
          8:30 p.m. | Final Stage
          11:00 p.m. | Open Mic

Competition Format

Information coming soon

Annual Convention

Voices Set Free

June 5th – June 10th, 2024

at: DoubleTree Hilton
Roswell, GA

Voices Set Free is a great opportunity to meet other poets from across the country, hone your skills, and get inspired by published poets. It has four days packed full of poetry events.

Each day of the conference, you will have writing workshops to improve your skills. There will be readings from several notable poets each day and open mic time for you to take the stage and share your work.

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Register for Annual Convention --- Voices Set Free

Conference $125: Convention registrants can also attend all events of the BlackBerry Peach National Slam Poetry Competition.

All Meals Package $213: Options for purchasing lunch ($19) and dinner ($31) individually is available on the NFSPS convention website

All Event Pass $338: Includes conference pass and all meals


Itinerary for the Annual Convention — Voices Set Free

Wednesday,  June 5, 2024

Registration Opens: 9:00a

Open Mic Poetry Reading: 10:30a

Slam Orientation: 2:00p

Writing Workshop:3:00p

STAGE: Blackberry Peach Poetry Slam  ROUND ONE: 6:30p -11:00p

Thursday, June 6th

NFSPS Inc Board Meeting: 9:00a
Registration table opens Rotunda: 9:30a
Open Mic Poetry Reading: 10:00a-12:00p
Writing/Performance Workshop: 10:00a
Book Room opens for sale of books: 1:00p
PANEL DISCUSSION: How We Appreciate Poetry: 1:30p
     Hip Hop:  DeVeata Williams Lady Vee The Poet
     Slam: Noir Jente
     Translations: Lucinda Clark Poetry Matters Project
     Youth: Kelsey  and Caleb Negro Artist                      

Convention Madness Winners: 6:00p

STAGE:  Blackberry Peach Poetry Slam  ROUND TWO: 6:30p - 11:00p      
Open Mic Poetry Reading: 11:00 p - 12:00a

Friday, June 7th

Open Mic Poetry Reading/Welcome: Barbara Nishanian President GPS: 7:30a  -  8:30a

NFSPS Inc Contest Awards:  8:30 am

Youth Poetry Workshop Facilitator - Dahana: 10:00a

Workshop for Adults John Hinton  Delving Deeper into Your Poetic Voice:11:00 am

Luncheon - Poem by Invocation Contest winner:12:15p
Barbara Stevens Manuscript Award:1:15 p 

Fun activity/fellowship for Youth Festival: 1:30pm

NFSPS Inc Contest Awards: 2:30p

Youth Poetry Workshop: 3:15p

Youth Poetry Slam and open: 4:30p 

Dinner & Announcement of Adult Slam Finalists with poems by invocation contest winner and youth slam winner: 6:30p 

Georgia Keynote Speaker DeVeata Williams Atlanta Out Loud: 7:30p

Open Mic Poetry Reading:  8:45p - 10:00p

NU PIC (slam event): 10:00p


Saturday, June 8th: Georgia Poetry Society Showcase Day

Open Mic poetry reading: 7:30a

Registration Open in Bookroom: 8:30
State President’s meeting: 8:30a
Book Room Open: 9:00a
Plenary Session  (elections, reports, delegate votes): 9:45a

Writing/Performance Workshop: 9:45a
Luncheon  - Poem by Invocation Contest winner & Manningham Winners: 12:15p
Georgia State Showcase: 1:00p
NFSPS Inc Contest Awards: 3:30p

Dinner -  Poem by invocation contest winner, youth slam winner reader & CUP Winners: 5:00p

Autograph signing at book room for Speakers: 5:15p
STAGE:  Blackberry Peach Poetry Slam  ROUND THREE (FINALS): 6:30p 
Open Mic Poetry Reading:11:00p


Sunday, June 9th

Open Mic Poetry Reading: 8:00a 

Presentation: 9:30a

Lunch & Poems by Invocation Contest winner& Blackberry Peach Performance Poetry Winners:  12:00p 

Workshop by Keynote Tamika Harper:  2:15pm

Autograph signing for keynote:  4:00p 

Gala Dinner - Poem by Invocation Contest winner:  6:00p

Keynote Address Tamika Harper:  7:30p

NFSPS Inc Contest Awards:  8:45p

Open Mic Poetry Reading:  10:00p 

Monday, June 10th: Optional Tour

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