Festival Details

41st Annual Parkmont Poetry Festival

Deadline for Submissions:
Friday, February 17, 2023

Festival Date:
Saturday, April 29, 2023

Festival Time:
2:00 pm

Festival Location:
Zion Baptist Church
4850 Blagden Avenue NW
Washington, DC

Judges for 2023:
Final Judge
To be announced
Preliminary Judge(s)

To be announced

Rules & Details for Submitting Poems

  • The competition is open to any student who attends a school in DC, whether the student resides in DC, Maryland or Virginia. Homeschooled students living in DC are also invited to participate.
  • Students may submit previously published poems and poems written a few years ago.
  • Students may submit no more than 2 poems.
  • Poems must be typed.
  • If mailing your submission, be sure to fill out the Poetry Entry Form and include it with your poem(s) so that we have your name, home phone, school, grade, and teacher’s name and contact information. Download the form here.
  • Finalists are strongly encouraged to attend the reading ceremony, but they are not required to do so.
  • The Poetry Festival Ceremony and Poetry Reading is open to the public.
  • If you’d like to purchase extra copies of a Festival booklet, send your request using the “Questions? Contact Us” button below.


  • $40 Gift Certificate.
  • Festival T-shirt.
  • Publication in the Parkmont Poetry Festival Winners booklet.



The 2022 In-person Parkmont Poetry Festival

Our 40th annual festival marked a return to the live event we have not been able to host since 2019. We hope you will enjoy seeing and hearing the poets breathe life into their verse; in addition, the moving address by Finalist Judge Ethelbert Miller is a tribute to the power of the written word. The students’ winning poems can be read by downloading the 2022 booklet here.

Our 39th annual festival was held on Saturday, May 1 as a Zoom webinar. Please enjoy this recording of the event. These wonderful young poets make the screen feel as intimate as the live room, and their poetry is vibrant and thrilling!
In our 38-year history, 2020 marked the first year that we did not assemble in fellowship and solidarity to support our winning poets as they shared their verse at the podium. In lieu of our in-person Festival and Reading, originally scheduled for Saturday, May 2, the 38th annual Parkmont Poetry Festival celebrated our 40 winners by compiling videos of each poet reading their winning verse.
2018 Finalist Judge Anne Woodworth was unable to attend the Festival, but sent along her gift to the 40 winning poets: a new composite poem created out of excerpts from all of the winning poems; she called it a “convolute.”
Videographer Elizabeth Dausch created a documentary that serves as an introduction to the Parkmont Poetry Festival. View it to learn the origins of our Festival.