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Dorothy Shoemaker Awards

Poets and songwriters are invited to enter the Dorothy Shoemaker Awards, beginning Wednesday, December 1.

The 2021 Awards feature twin competitions for Poetry and Songwriting, with a total of $7000 in prize money available. The contests are open to residents of Southwestern Ontario only.

Detailed information about the rules and guidelines, judges, and how to enter each contest can be found using the links below.

Poetry Contest     Songwriting Contest

About the Dorothy Shoemaker Awards

The Awards began in 1967 as a Centennial project, created by Dorothy Shoemaker, Kitchener Public Library's Chief Librarian from 1944 to 1971. 

In 1996, when government funding for the awards was eliminated, Ms. Shoemaker made a significant personal donation to ensure the awards would continue. In 2000, Ms. Shoemaker passed away at the age of 94; however, her legacy of support for aspiring writers continues today through her ongoing endowment. The contest is available to individuals living in Southwestern Ontario


Kitchener Waterloo Community Foundation


Dorothy Shoemaker