Monterey Poetry Festival Returns at the Revived Old Capitol Books

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A man in a red-and-white striped unitard leaning against a RV.
The multidisciplinary artist Chris Carr will read his poetry for the festival.  (Courtesy of Old Capitol Books)

The Downtown Monterey standby Old Capitol Books was forced to shut down during the pandemic—but, in a happy ending, it reopened this spring just a couple blocks away from its old location. Consider the weekend-long Monterey Poetry Festival at Old Capitol Books a tribute to the tenacity of independent bookstores, which connect readers with local artists and writers like nothing else.

The festival will take place over one weekend, Oct. 1–3, in the surprisingly spacious nooks of Old Capitol Books. Dozens of local poets are scheduled to read their work, including Aideed Medina, Brian Sheffield and Heather Flescher.

This year’s slate of events includes a poetry writing workshop, a showcase of the work of CSU Monterey Bay students and a fundraiser for undocumented rights advocacy group No More Deaths. The festival will conclude on Sunday with the launch parties of several zines, including the underground music circular Lowpass Magazine and the feminist, art-focused Virgo Mag.

The Monterey Poetry Festival runs Oct. 1–3. Events are ticketed and prices vary. Details here.