CHICAGO, IL â€“ Chicago Detours is presenting â€œLost Chicago Drinking Poems,â€ a one-time-only special event of present day award-winning writers reading poems from the past about clubs, saloons, and beer. The reading takes place at the Berghoff on Saturday, March 3 as an off-site event for the Association of Writers and Writing Programs Conference (AWP). It is free with RSVP and open to the public, 6:15pm-7:30pm.
The poems were dug up from archives by Chicago Detours, a creative tour company. Notable Chicago poets and writers will read alongside AWP award winning novelists Mandy Keifetz, Douglas Light, and also Chicagoâ€™s own very accomplished Hannah Pittard. Denese Neu, author of Chicago by the Pint: a Craft Beer History of the Windy City, will read an excerpt from her new book. Guests arriving early will receive light complimentary appetizers. RSVP is required to firstname.lastname@example.org as SPACE IS LIMITED.
Douglas Light won an AWP award for short story Girls in Trouble, and his East Fifth Bliss novel was adapted to the 2009 film starring Michael C. Hall, Peter Fonda, and Lucy Liu. Mandy Keifetz, of Brooklyn, NY, won the 2010 AWP fiction award, and both she and Douglas are among the Featured Presenters for the AWP. Hannah Pittard, who teaches fiction at DePaul University, was included in 2008 Best American Short Stories’ 100 Distinguished Stories. Other readers include: poet Sophie Grimes; Amy Ganser, co-editor of Chicago-based literary magazine Two With Water; and Chris Bower, host of two literary nights in Chicago.
AWP off-site events are happening throughout the city, and the “Lost Drinking Poems” event is just a couple blocks from the AWP Conference site of the Palmer House Hotel. Many off-site events are taking place at local bars and brewpubs, and only this event integrates literature with the environs in a celebration of Chicagoâ€™s literary, brewing, and drinking history.
Though Chicago Detours primarily focuses on guided tours of history, culture and architecture for public and private groups, their explorations may surface time to time in other forms â€“ for example, as a creative video or this poetry reading. They sold-out their new “Good Times Historic Bar Tour” offered only in February, and the company may continue to offer it in the future alongside their â€œInside the Loop,â€ interior architectural tour. Hear more about Chicago Detours’ creative angle on travel on Rick Kogan’s WGN Radio interview with Chicago Detours Founder Amanda Scotese from Feb. 5 (listen here). Â