CLEARWATER (CW44 News At 10) – If you’re planning a stroll through Clearwater, don’t forget to look down! The city of Clearwater is excited to announce the winners of the city’s first-ever, city-wide poetry competition, “Poetry Made Concrete.”

The five winning poems will be featured in the coming months on Clearwater’s sidewalks for the life of the walkway, by stamping the poems into the concrete of newly constructed and repaired sidewalks in five locations throughout the city.

The city received more than 200 submissions from Clearwater residents and students. Thanks to the judges who participated:

  • Dr. Greg Byrd – Professor at SPC-Clearwater, and published poet and author.
  • Sarah Hayes – Countryside High School student.
  • Juliahna Green – Clearwater Neighborhoods Coordinator.
  • Howard Smith – Community Redevelopment Business Administrator and Diversity Leadership Committee Member.
  • Lisa Baughman – Clearwater Librarian.

“This program brings art and literature to the public realm by transforming something as ordinary as a sidewalk into a work of art. We hope that when residents happen upon these poems around the city, it will add moments of surprise and inspiration to an otherwise unassuming public space” said Juliahna Green, Neighborhoods Coordinator.

The winners of Clearwater’s 2020 Poetry Made Concrete competition are Jason Fritsky, Karen Cunningham, Kathryn Marquina, Ted Knapp, and Shayna Walker.  Their poems can be found here: https://www.myclearwater.com/residents/neighborhood-services/clearwater-placemaking-hub/sidewalk-poetry.

The Poetry Made Concrete program is part of the city’s placemaking initiative to make public spaces fun and engaging. This is the sixth placemaking project the city has launched this year. The city has also introduced sidewalk rain art, signal box art, storm drain mural program, the little free library program, and dumpster art. All programs are active and have received widespread community interest and support.

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