Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Wyoming Young Writer's Camp finds a new home

My son Kevin attended the Young Writers Camp for five of his teen years. The camp, geared to secondary school students ages 15-18, was held at the Thorne-Rider Youth Camp near the appropriately-named Story for a dozen years. Before that, YWC was held on the grounds of the Ucross Artist Residency Program. Poet Jane Wohl ran the show until she started teaching full time at Sheridan College. YWC alum Micah Wyatt then took over the reins, with assistance from his sister Danica, California poet Jesse Loesberg, and some guest writers, such as me, who dropped in to teach a workshop around the campfire in 2006.

Kevin was still in junior high the first time he went to camp. He loved it. During his checkered high school career, when he regularly skipped algebra and science to board at the adjacent skate park, he never missed camp. Ten years later, he keeps in touch with a whole group of YWC alums. 

After a hiatus of several years, the camp will be held July 27-August 2 at the Northern Wyoming Community College District Spear-O-Wigwam Mountain Campus in the Big Horns. Instructors are poet/attorney/musician Micah Wyatt, fiction writer Christine Fadden and Kara Bacon. Registration fee is $300. To register, go to http://www.sheridan.edu/site/spearowigwam/register-now/

According to the NWCCD web site, the Spear-O-Wigwam grounds is the site of a literary landmark. During the summer of 1928, Ernest Hemingway wrote the first draft of "A Farewell to Arms" in one of the Spear-O-Wigwam cabins. The semi-autobiographical novel was serialized in Scribner’s magazine from May to October 1929, bringing Hemingway international acclaim as the Great Depression began. Even today, the book is recognized as an emblematic narrative of the World War I generation.

Hemingway's old stomping grounds may be a pretty good place for a 16-year-old to find his/her Muse.

No comments: