XXXI World Congress of Poets – USA
Posted: Monday, March 05, 2012 at 09:24 PM UTC
The sun rose over Lake Michigan, like a shining beacon over the City of Kenosha on August 29, 2011. The World Congress of Poets, under the auspices of the World Academy of Arts and Culture (UNESCO) convened for the 31st time in over 40 years in the small Midwestern city, once named Pikes Creek and Southport, Wisconsin.
Carthage College on Lake Michigan offered their A.F. Siebert Chapel for our Opening Conference and its facilities for the first day’s activities. The Parade of Nations opened the Conference with all the participant nations processing into the Chapel including Argentina, Austria, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Ecuador, France, Ho-Chunk Nation, India, Israel, Japan, Mexico, Morocco,Occupied Assyria, Spain, South Korea, Venezuela, and the United States of America.
The theme song “The Shining City on A Hill,” performed and arranged by the Grammy Award winning The King’s Singers (UK), was played during the procession. Dr. William P. Schmitt, Vice President of the 31st WCP, proclaimed the nations.
Dr. Maurus Young, President of the World Academy of Arts and Culture (UNESCO) said it best, “This is the first time in the World Congress of Poets history where we have had a Parade of Nations with flags. This is also the first time in World Congress history, where we have had pre-Congress events. Another first is the Cultural Art Exchange program between China, Japan and the United States. Finally, this Congress is the first time we will have an International Garden of Peace.”
During the Conference speeches were delivered by the Honorable Keith Bosman, Mayor of the City of Kenosha, State Representative John Steinbrink of the 65th District of Wisconsin, George Tsorgas, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Arts Board, Dr. Maurus Young, Dr. Ernesto Kahan, 1st Vice President of the World Academy and Dr. Mary Ann Lackovich, President of the 31st World Congress.
Honorary Doctorate Degrees of Literature were given to Carlos Hugo Garrido Chalen (Peru), Bella Clara Ventura (Colombia), Yang Keum-seon (South Korea), Darius Pacak (Austria).
Honorary Doctorate Degrees of Humanities were bestowed upon Keith Bosman, Mayor of the City of Kenosha, Leo Grillo, Founder of D.E.L.T.A.; Ron Robinson, President of Young America’s Foundation; and Eduardo Verastegui, Actor and Pro-Life Champion.
Presidential Medals honored Stacey D.K. Mia (USA), Kae Morii (Japan), Patricia Garza Soberanis (Mexico) and Rosalba de la Cruz (Mexico).
A Cultural Art Exchange, the first of its kind in the WCP history, was presented and accepted from China, Japan and the United States.
Dr. Yu Liansheng, one of the most prestigious calligraphers in China, and eight other Chinese calligraphers brought their artwork to present to the City of Kenosha.
Madame Toshie Tai of Japan offered her calligraphy to the City.
Mayor Bosman and Judy Russow, on behalf of Kenosha’s own Pollard Family, presented the artwork of George and Nan Pollard to China and Japan in return. Loretta Grabske, watercolor artist, of Watertown, Wisconsin presented eleven original paintings as gifts on behalf of the State of Wisconsin.
The Conference included many more presentations including performances by Stacey Mia (“The Shining City on A Hill”, the Congress’ theme song) and Miss Wisconsin 2011 Laura Kaeppeler (“The Star Spangled Banner” and “Blessings”). She summed the whole conference this way, “I am so happy that I was able to participate in this event. I experienced pure love from the poets.”