Saturday, April 27, 2013

The days the Poet Laureate came to town

It is almost a year ago that I was electronically approached by Tomas Benitez and Rebecca Nevarez, of the Latino Arts Network of California, to see if Latino Heritage would be willing to partner with LAN on a grant.  Knowing Tomas it was easy for me to get the group to agree to partner.  Learning that it would bring California Poet Laureate, Juan Felipe Herrea to Pasadena, made it super easy to do so.

In December I joined Tomas and Rebecca on a field trip to meet Juan Felipe.  Well, for me to meet him.      I was charmed.  He was tremendously down to earth and funny.  We had lunch at a Vietnamese restaurant in Riverside, telling stories, laughing and eating.  How good does it get?

In March Juan Felipe came to Pasadena.

He arrived at La Pintoresca Teen Education Center to spend time with youth.

Revise - to charm and interact with our youth.

Revise - to help our youth share their voice.

Quick dinner snack and then on to Pasadena City College.

A different sort of presentation and interaction

but still deeply personal and genuine.

Today Juan Felipe will be at KPCC's Crawford Family Forum.  I believe it is standing room only, but you might check and see if you can get in.  

If you do, you'll have a grand time, you'll be moved by the poetry to be shared, and you'll be a part of Pasadena history - the day the Poet Laureate came to town.

You might even get to be in a group picture.  


  1. He sounds like a great guy, just the kind of person people like to exchange ideas with. And look, you even got Kurt Vonnegut to show up for him!

  2. I'll have to let Tomas know about your reference. If we can say he's a young Vonnegut I think that will please him. One of the best things about this day was 'having" to drive JF back to Riverside. What a joy.

  3. I hope it pleases him. It's a compliment.

  4. I'll share that with him. I suspect he'll enjoy it. He is a former director of Self Help Graphics, loves baseball, especially Los Doyers - is a founding member of of the Baseball Reliquary Society, and admires/loves Sal Castro and Shakespeare.