As part of our commitment to the memory of Theodore Roethke, the Friends of the Theodore Roethke Foundation take great pride in being actively involved in our community. We have provided ongoing opportunities since 1998, often through grants from groups such as the Saginaw Community Foundation, Saginaw Community Enrichment Commision, and the Michigan Humanities Council. Our goal is for the Roethke House to serve a catalyst for community-based education.
The Friends coordinated a Centennial Celebration from May 2008-May 2009 in Saginaw, funded in part by a grant form The National Endowment for the Arts. [link to NEA grant] David Wagoner, poet, friend and former student of Roethke, presented First Class, his one-act play about Roethke as well as leading workshops and reading his own poetry. Other events included children‘s poetry at the zoo, a Rouse for Roethke, centennial walks across the Court Street Bridge, and visits to Roethke‘s grave.
Here are other highlights of our community involvement
- Writing workshops open to the community
- Oral history projects involving area seniors, including nursing home residents
- Presentations and tours of the Roethke House for area groups
- Tours of Roethke's Saginaw including local landmarks and Oakwood Cemetery
- Literary picnics featuring area authors, art, musicians and restaurants
- Landscapring by Master Gardeners