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Entry Deadline March 15 for Sandburg Poetry Competition

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Feb. 24, 2017
GALESBURG — Carl Sandburg College is seeking entries for the 28th annual Carl Sandburg College Poetry Competition. Entries are due March 15. The contest is open to the public, and poems will be judged in three categories: elementary (grades 1-5), intermediate (grades 6-12) and adult.


Winners will be recognized at the Carl Sandburg College Poetry Awards ceremony at 6:30 p.m. April 27 in the Student Center on the Main Campus in Galesburg, 2400 Tom L. Wilson Blvd., during the Carl Sandburg Festival, which will take place April 27-29.


Certificates will be awarded to first-, second- and third-place winners in each category. All category winners are invited to the awards ceremony to read their compositions and receive prizes donated by Carl Sandburg College. All winning poems will be published in a booklet that will be distributed at the awards ceremony.



  1. Each contestant must live within 200 miles of Carl Sandburg College District 518.
  2. Each contestant may enter one poem only.
  3. The poem must be typed, in black ink, 12-point font, double-spaced, on 8½-by-11-inch plain white paper, with the contestant's name, address, phone number and age category in the upper right-hand corner. New this year, you may submit your poetry electronically as an attachment to
  4. Poems must be original and previously unpublished.
  5. Poems should not be more than two pages.
  6. The poet should demonstrate wit, intelligence, imagination and the apt treatment of sound, image, concept and avoid vulgarities. Poems may be free verse or written in pre-established forms (sonnet, sestina, etc.).
  7. While the poet will retain all rights of authorship, the poet will grant to Carl Sandburg College the right to publish any or all of the work, or use it for publicity purposes, without the payment of royalties or fees. Entries will not be returned.
  8. Submissions must be received no later than March 15. Submissions may be sent to or to the following address: Carol Petersen, associate dean of humanities and fine arts, Carl Sandburg College, 2400 Tom L. Wilson Blvd., Galesburg, Ill., 61401


For more information, contact Carol Petersen at 309.341.5416 or