A great night of poetry will take place once again on Friday, April 27, at Dog Ears Bookstore, a nonprofit bookstore located at 688 Abbott Road in South Buffalo.
The 4th Friday Poetry Series will host local poets Sara Ries and Janna Willoughby-Lohr beginning at 7 p.m. A $2 donation will benefit educational programs provided by the bookstore. Open reading slots will also be available.
Ries was born in Buffalo, where her parents have owned a diner since she was just 2 years old. She holds an MFA from Chatham University in Pittsburgh, where she received the Best Thesis in Poetry Award. Her first book, “Come In, We're Open,” won the Stevens Poetry Manuscript Competition and was published in June 2010 by the NFSPS Press. Her poem, “Fish Fry Daughter,” was selected by Ted Kooser for his American Life in Poetry column. Her poems have appeared in Earth’s Daughters, Artvoice, Blast Furnace and The Buffalo News. She currently hosts the Poetry & Dinner Night Reading Series at the Woodlawn Diner and teaches at Erie Community College.
Willoughby-Lohr has been writing poetry since she was 5 and performing since age 12. She graduated from Warren Wilson College in 2004 with a BA in Integrative Studies. Since graduation, she has been performing poetry and music steadily as her alter-ego, MC Vendetta, and as her singer/songwriter self, Janna-Ruth. A Grand Slam finalist from 2005-2008 in the Nickel City Poetry Slam and a member of the 2006 Nickel City Slam team at the National Poetry Slam, she is also an editor and layout artist for Earth's Daughters literary magazine. Since 2008 she has been performing with her band, The Blood Thirsty Vegans, a lively mix of energetic hip-hop, rock, funk, ska and blues, topped off with socially-conscious, positive lyrics. She was awarded the Best Spoken-Word Artist in the 2011 Artvoice Best of Buffalo Awards.
Willoughby-Lohr currently works as a teaching artist and project coordinator in Chautauqua and Erie counties, teaching poetry and art to middle school students. She is also a graphic designer for Bodycandy.com.
For more information about the Dog Ears Bookstore or upcoming events, please visit www.dogearsbookstore.org or call 823-2665. You can also follow Dog Ears Bookstore on Facebook for frequent updates.