“The Cradle of American Haiku” Festival 2010


“Remembering Bob Spiess—His Life and his Work”

together with

Annual Meeting of the Haiku Society of America

Mineral Point, Wisconsin
September 10–12


The second biannual haiku festival is planned for the weekend of September 10–12, in Mineral Point, Wisconsin. The series of gatherings celebrates the seminal role of the Midwest and Midwesterners in establishing American haiku, including Fr. Raymond Roseliep, whose work brought about a whole school of American haiku writing; Robert Spiess, longtime editor of Modern Haiku; and James and Gayle Bull, publishers of American Haiku, the first non-Japanese haiku journal.

Featured events for the 2010 Festival include:

Friday, September 10

2:00–7:00            Registration at The Foundry Books: 105 Commerce Street, Mineral Point
4:00–5:00            Haiku Society of America annual meeting
5:00–7:00            Opening reception sponsored by Modern Haiku
7:00–8:30            Memories of Bob Spiess — Speakers to include Bob’s friends and associates. To be followed by group readings of Bob’s haiku and “Speculations.”
8:30–9:30            Open haiku reading

Saturday, September 11

                           Breakfast on your own
7:30–8:00           Tai chi warm-up — Jayne Miller
9:00–9:55           Robert Spiess: A Poetics for Modern Haiku — Randy Brooks
9:55–10:10         Break
10:10–11:05       Robert Spiess’s Muse — Lee Gurga
11:05–11:20       Break
11:20–12:15       Verbs in Haiku — Charles Trumbull
12:15–1:15         Lunch on your own
1:15–2:45            Hat Haiku: A Midwest Workshop — Francine Banwarth & Dubuque Haiku
1:15–2:45            Traditional Approach to Haiga — Lidia Rozmus
1:15–2:45            Experience Kodo (Japanese Incense): Enjoy the subtleties and nuances of incense from Japan — Jerome Cushman
3:00–4:30            A Journey to the Back of Beyond: Risk–taking in Haibun — Roberta Beary
3:45–5:15            Repeat Lidia Rozmus’s workshop
4:15–5:45            Repeat Jerome Cushman’s workshop
4:45–5:45            Instant Feedback: One-on-one mini conference sessions with award–winning haiku, senryu, rengay, and haibun writers, editors, and publishers
6:00–6:45            Cocktails and social at TFB
6:45–7:45            Midwest–style picnic/tailgate at TFB
7:45–8:15            HSA announcements and presentation of the Haiku North America banner to Randy Brooks
8:15–9:15            Open reading

Sunday, September 12

                              Breakfast on your own
9:00–10:30         Shake Rag Alley ginko
10:30–11:00       Announcement of kukai contest winners
11:30–?                Lunch and haiku reading — Location TBA


Throughout the Festival

Exhibit of sumi-e (black-ink drawings) and haiga (haiku paintings) by Lidia Rozmus

The Festival will feature a kukai with the theme “Transitions.” Everyone is encouraged to bring one original, unpublished haiku that pertains to this theme (two 3 x 5 card copies, one with your name/email and another without your name) and turn them in at registration. Deadline for entries will be 9:00 Saturday morning. Entries will be posted so that everyone who enters the kukai can read and vote on them. The winners will be announced, read and discussed at 10:30 Sunday morning at The Foundry Books.

The Foundry Books will sell books for both publishers and individual poets during the Festival. You set the price and we will keep $1.00 from the sale of each book to cover our costs. Please bring a list of the books you are selling, the number of copies available, and the cost of each book—or even better, e-mail Gayle Bull at the above address with the information so that we’ll plan enough space and a price list can be available to the person running the bookstore.

Social events and featured readings will take place at Gayle Bull’s shop, The Foundry Books, while the Mineral Point Opera House has been reserved for the main sessions.

Registration, the opening reception hosted by Modern Haiku, the Midwest-style tailgate picnic, and two of the workshops will be held at The Foundry Books. Other activities will take place at the newly restored Mineral Point Opera House. The bookstore and the Opera House are within walking distance, but there are lots of hills in this town and shuttle vans will be provided. There are great restaurants within easy walking distance of both venues. This is a very informal event. We encourage you to leave the white shirts and ties, the uncomfortable dress shoes, etc. at home. Dress is “Midwest casual” (shorts, sandals, jeans). The weather in mid-September is usually comfortably warm, but come prepared for cool evenings.

We want as many as possible to attend the Festival, so we have kept the fees to a minimum—$30.00—to cover the opening reception, the workshops, a tai-chi session, a ginko walk, and the picnic. While there is no pre-registration, we do need to know approximately how many will be attending in order to prepare enough food, wine, beer, etc. Please e-mail Gayle Bull at info@foundrybooks.com and let her know how many there will be in your party.

Mineral Point is located in southwest Wisconsin halfway between Dubuque, Iowa, and Madison, Wisconsin, and about 45 minutes from either. We will arrange a van pick-up and drop-off at the Madison airport for those who wish to fly into Madison.

Mineral Point has 17 B&B’s and 3 motels. Room rates range from $50.00–$120.00 a night. Blocks of rooms have been booked at all three motels and at the Mineral Point Hotel (which is really a B&B). None of these places has many handicapped-accessible rooms, so book early if you require this. Block reservations will be held only until August 9 as there is another event in town, a large rug-hooking workshop at Shake Rag Alley School for the Arts, that weekend. Check the Mineral Point Web site (www.mineralpoint.com) for lodging details and to make online reservations.

Mineral Point was included on the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Dozen Distinctive Destinations in 2007. The picturesque town is known for its art, architecture, and ambiance. People who come here never want to leave! We hope you become one of them. For more information about Mineral Point, contact the Chamber of Commerce (info@mineralpoint.com) or Gayle Bull (info@foundrybooks.com) for a brochure.