Hamden Arts Commission honors Franz Douskey as first town Poet Laureate at BVFCC Wed., Nov. 2

Franz Douskey reading at Best Video in 2011. Photo by Eric D. Lehman.

Franz Douskey reading at Best Video in 2011. Photo by Eric D. Lehman.

The Hamden Arts Commission will host an informal reception to honor Franz Douskey for his appointment as Hamden’s first Poet Laureate.

The wine and cheese reception will be held on Wed., Nov. 2, 7:30 pm at Best Video Film & Cultural Center, 1842 Whitney Ave., Hamden. The program will include welcoming remarks by Hamden Mayor Curt Balzano Leng, and selected readings by Douskey.

Franz Douskey, a poet, novelist and teacher, is an influential contemporary American writer who has been published in nearly 200 publications, including The Nation, The New Yorker, Georgia Review, New York Quarterly and Rolling Stone. He has read from his works at hundreds of venues. His first full-length book of poetry was published in 1982. A more recent book of poetry, “West of Midnight: New & Selected Poems” was nominated for a 2012 Pulitzer Prize.

The Town of Hamden has joined a growing number of Connecticut towns that have appointed poet laureates in recent years. In 2014, the Connecticut Coalition of Poet Laureates initiated a movement to promote poetry as a resource for communities, advocating for the establishment of the honorary positions of local poet laureates. The laureates are committed to promoting the literary arts and poetry in their communities through workshops, readings and teaching.

The event is free and open to the public. For information, contact the Arts Commission at (203) 287-2546.

Mayor’s Night Out with Hamden Mayor Curt Balzano Leng Tues., June 30, 6-8 PM

Mayor Curt Balzano Leng will be hosting the inaugural “Mayor’s Night Out” on Tuesday, June 30, from 68 p.m. at Best Video, located at 1842 Whitney Avenue in Hamden.

The Mayor will be available for dialogue and citizen input on neighborhood as well as Town-wide issues in an informal coffee hour-type setting. The goal of this initiative is to provide greater accessibility to the Mayor throughout the community and work directly with residents in their neighborhoods.

Mayor’s Night Outwill be held in various Hamden neighborhoods throughout the coming months. For further information, please contact Chief Administrative Officer, Julie E. Smith at (203) 287-7100 or by email at jsmith@hamden.com.