Students from Hood River Valley High School competed in the Poetry Out Loud national recitation contest Thursday in Columbia Center for the Arts’ CAST Theater.

Coming out on top this year were Emmy McPherson, first; Sophia Marble, second; Logan Glass, third; Christopher Dorzab, fourth; and Hannah Hart, fifth.

The judges were Anne Lerch, Phil Brady, Brian Courtney, Luke Webb and Penny Grotting. Keith Harding was the prompter/accuracy judge. Coaches were Gabe Judah and Regena Rafelson.

Local writer Susan Hess dedicated a perpetual plaque, engraved with the names of previous winners, in the memory of Althea Hukari, who passed away Sept. 5, 2012. Hukari was an enthusiastic supporter of the event.

An example of one of the poems read at the event, in this case by Noah Noteboom, is “Momma Said,” by Calvin Ford, reprinted at right.

The winner of the local competion is eligible to compet in the state contest March 16.

Past winners include Duncan Krummel (2012), James Patterson (2011), Patrick Sadil (2009, 2010), Claire Smith (2008) and Lauren Hay (2006, 2007).

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