Big read attracts Poe fans from all over Kenosha

Screen Shot 2013-11-20 at 9.00.00 AMBy Madeline Marks | Staff writer

Edgar_Allan_Poe_2_retouched_and_transparent_bgSept. 27 marked the first day of The Big Read, a nationwide celebration of reading. This year in Kenosha, The Big Read is centered around Edgar Allen Poe.

Poe was an American poet made famous by works such as The Raven, The Black Cat and Annabelle Lee. Poe’s tales are of mystery and macabre, fitting for this October Big Read.

“I like the horror and macabre aspect and how it deals with our fears and just the whole mental side of it,” said Shawna Ward, an IT school librarian. “I think people have the capacity to be evil and Edgar Allen
Poe shows that.”

“I love the consistency of the dark settings of his works,” said Megan Ilang, a Communications senior. “My favorite poem is probably ‘Lenore’.”

The book being read this year is The Great Tales and Poems Of Edgar Allen Poe, which was distributed for free on Sept. 27. Participants read the book and attend certain events center around Edgar Allen Poe.

Some of these events include the Monster 6 art show at Art Works, a Scary Story writing contest, Carthage Family Fun Night, the Haunted Milwaukee trip, Teen Live Clue, Parkside Fall Fest, International Poe Celebration, Poe Movie Night For Youth and the Poe Poetry Workshop.

And these are only some of the events that are happening all over Kenosha, WI and the surrounding area.

“I think it’s important because it shows a lot of different ways that you can respond to literature,” Ward said.

Some local businesses and schools are sponsoring the event, including Art Works, Carthage College, UW-Parkside, Simmons Library, Lemon Street Gallery, Public Craft Brewing Company and the Kemper Center.

“For the students who participate, I think they will like seeing other people’s interpretations of it,” Ward said.

“I’m definitely going to check it out,” Ilang said.

More information can be found at or