Writers Harvest brings a feast to a local foodbank

Alison Baldridge, Reporter

The A.E. Stringer Visiting Writers Series took place Sept. 15, showcasing local writers and collecting nonperishable food items for donation to Facing Hunger Food Bank as part of National Hunger Action Month.

Writers Harvest featured each writer reading some of their work, a Q&A and book signing after the event.

Sarah Chavez, visiting assistant professor and coordinator for Visiting Writers Series, welcomed everyone and introduced Suzanne Brady, director of development and communication for Facing Hunger Food Bank.

“We have served 17 counties in the Tri-State area: 12 in West Virginia, four in Kentucky and one in Ohio,” Brady said. “Most of our food is brought in by donation or purchasing. The reason I am focused on purchasing is because we are a member of Facing Hunger Food Bank, which is why we are celebrating National Hunger Awareness Month.”

For every dollar donated to Facing Hunger Food Bank, seven and a half meals can be given out.

Laura Treacy Bentley, Huntington native and Marshall alum, was the first author introduced and read different sections of poetry from her latest book, “Looking from Ireland.” She also included a photo gallery on a projector that demonstrated each poem.

Joel Peckham, assistant professor in the English department, also read a few pages of his creative nonfiction piece, “Phys Ed,” from his book “Body Memory.”

Chavez said this event was successful and thought that the goal for donations was reached.

“I thought everything was wonderful,” Chavez said. “I thought Suzanne Brady from Facing Hunger Food Bank was great. She gave us really important information. The readers also did a fantastic job. It’s great to have readers that are so different, and this is what I like, so we can have different types of work read by amazing readers. I can’t believe how much food has been donated. The barrel is full, and having so much food being donated makes me incredibly happy.”

The next Visiting Writers Series reading will be a Hispanic Heritage Month reading Thursday, Oct. 5 at 7:30 p.m. in the Visual Arts Center. There will also be a panel discussion Wednesday, Oct. 4.

Alison Baldridge can be contacted at [email protected].