BISMARCK, N.D. - When you think of state tournaments, you think of athletes participating in sports. But Monday, students from around North Dakota competed at the state Poetry Out Loud competition.
Students competed within their own schools to advance to the state finals at the North Dakota Heritage Center.
The winners are awarded a free trip to Washington, D.C., for the national Poetry Out Loud event.
Poetry is enhanced by delivery.
Students from all over the state spent Monday reciting the works of others.
Some said they were nervous, while some think they knocked it out of the park.
"I just kept thinking about if I was going to mess up or if I'm going to be skipping a word. I don't think it went really well for me," said Dylan Red Bow, student at Solen High School.
"I think I did pretty well. I can only really compare myself to myself, at least that's how I like to think about it," said David Moreno, student at Grand Forks Community High School.
The Poetry Out Loud judges looked for accuracy, physical presence, and eye contact.
"Just watching these young people come up on the stage with how composed they are, how ready they are to have memorized these poems and present them in such a beautiful way for us to enjoy is quite a competition," said Rebecca
Engelman, Arts and Education Director for the North Dakota Council on the Arts.
Students said this competition is an interesting experience and they're happy to get the opportunity to perform poetry at a state competition.
Maria Modi of North High School in Fargo won the state competition.
She'll advance to the National Finals in Washington, D.C., on April 23, and compete for a $50,000 scholarship and school prizes.