'Flowerpot Poetry Walk' set for this summer in downtown Detroit Lakes
Fresh off the success of Detroit Lakes' first-ever 'Polar-try Poetry Walk,' held during Polar Fest 2022, mother-daughter duo Mary Beth and Kendra Gilsdorf are planning a summer poetry walk — with poetry submissions to be printed and displayed in the colorful downtown flower pots, next to all the fresh blooms. Submissions for the Flowerpot Poetry Walk are being accepted through Monday, May 30.
DETROIT LAKES — With 20 poetry submissions displayed atop ice sculptures scattered throughout Detroit Lakes' City Park, the inaugural 'Polar-try Poetry Walk' added an innovative bit of artistry to this year's Polar Fest — and now, the organizers of that are planning a summer poetry walk, as well.
The "Flowerpot Poetry Walk" is so named because the submissions will be displayed as part of the flowerpots that add splashes of color throughout downtown Detroit Lakes during the summer months, says Mary Beth Gilsdorf, who is the principal organizer behind the new event.
"I talked to Patty LaBarre (who arranges the flowerpot distribution for downtown beautification each summer), and she was very open to the idea," said Gilsdorf.
A total of 20 poems will be chosen through a juried selection process, she added.
"I think 20 was a good number last time," Gilsdorf said. "We would love to do more, but we're trying to start small and keep it manageable and hopefully keep growing over the years."
The deadline for submissions is Monday, May 30 — Memorial Day — and much like they were for "Polar-try," the selected poems will be printed on Alumacor panels with the help of Trophy House.
"My goal is to get them proofed the first week in June, get them printed, and hopefully have them out by the Summer Solstice (June 21)," Gilsdorf said.
The plan is for the poetry walk to begin in downtown Detroit Lakes and lead down to the City Beach and Pavilion, she added.
"I’m excited," Gilsdorf said. "There should be a lot more people out and about, generating more questions and interest that could feed into the Polar-try walk, as well, to get it bigger and expand it to different areas. I think it’s kind of a fun, cool thing — some very subtle art that we can work into our everyday environment."
Guidelines for submission
Though there is a lot of freedom allowed for poetry submissions, a few guidelines have been established, as follows:
- Each person can submit up to three original poems.
- Poem structure must be a maximum of 40 characters per line, up to 18 lines (so they will fit on the panels).
- Poems can be in any form — haiku, rhyme, free form, etc., and use any topic so long as it is family-friendly.
- Poet will retain all rights to their work.
- Submissions must include name, address, email, title and complete text of poem, formatted as you want it printed.
Submissions may be emailed to DLpoetrywalk@gmail.com , which is also the contact point for more information.