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Samyak Shertok is Aspen Words' Writer in Residence for August

Nepali poet will speak at a free event in Aspen on August 20
Aspen, CO (July 29, 2019) – Poet Samyak Shertok will spend the month of August in Woody Creek, CO, as part of Aspen Words’ 2019 Writers in Residence program. Shertok, a 2018 Aspen Words Emerging Writer Fellow, will perform and discuss his work with poet and Aspen Words program coordinator Ellie Scott on August 20 at Hooch Craft Cocktail Bar (301 E. Hopkins Ave.).

Originally from the small community of Phalam Sangu in the Sindhupalchok district of Nepal, Shertok holds an MFA in creative writing from Arizona State University. His work has been published in The Cincinnati Review, Waxwing Literary Journal, La.Lit and “House of Snow: An Anthology of the Greatest Writing About Nepal.” In 2014 he was a visiting poet at the 
Mayo Clinic, where he wrote poems for palliative-unit patients as lyric medicine. After a devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake in his native country in April 2015, he founded the Healing Through Poetry: Nepal Earthquake Relief project and aided in the rebuilding of communities through creating and teaching poetry.
In 2018, Shertok was awarded an Aspen Words Emerging Writer fellowship, given to writers who demonstrate exceptional talent and promise. Fellows receive a full scholarship to the Summer Words writers conference and literary festival in Aspen. Of his desire to return to the local area for a residency Shertok noted, “Mountains, mystics say, embody the spiritual energy of the departed masters. I wanted to come back to this place and get to know it a little better and see what it does to my creative and mystical forces.” 

During his time in Woody Creek Shertok plans to continue work on his first collection of poems, tentatively titled “A Sky Burial.” However, he says, “I want to live in the present as much as possible, which means being aware of what's happening around and within me, developing a relationship with the land I'm living on and taking notes. And sometimes the notes want to tell me a story I didn't know was there. I want to be receptive to the poems that might arrive in such manner.” 

Following Shertok, September’s resident will be J.C. Hallman, whose writing combines memoir, history, journalism and travelogue. The complete lineup with author bios and event dates is available at aspenwords.org. 

   The Writers in Residence program is held in collaboration with the Catto Shaw Foundation.
                                                  Media partner: Aspen Magazine


WHEN: Tuesday, August 20 I 5:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. | Doors open at 5:00 p.m.

WHERE: Hooch Craft Cocktail Bar I 301 E. Hopkins Ave. 

THE EVENT IS FREE and open to the public. Donations at the door are encouraged.

Questions or requests for author interviews can be directed to: 
Mallory Kaufman
Program Coordinator
Aspen Words | Aspen Institute

[email protected]
Phone: 970-925-3122 x 2
Aspen Words was founded in 1976 as a literary center based in Aspen, CO. A program of the Aspen Institute, its mission is to encourage writers, inspire readers, and connect people through the power of stories. For more information, visit www.aspenwords.org.
The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, D.C. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, D.C; Aspen, CO; and on the Wye River on Maryland's Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, visitwww.aspeninstitute.org

4th of July Parade Waiver


PARADE STARTING/STAGING: The parade will begin at 11:00am. Parade positioning is “first come, first serve” and line up begins no earlier than 10:00am. There is no entry fee and the parade is open to the public. All 5 lanes of Main Street, from Aspen Street to 2nd Street, will be closed to all traffic & designated for parade staging only. Power is not provided in staging area and remember generators do need gas.

PARADE ROUTE: The parade will start East on Main Street. It will turn South onto Hunter Street, then West onto Cooper Avenue. The parade will continue West on Cooper Avenue to Galena Street. At Galena it heads North for 2 blocks before turning West onto Hopkins Avenue. The parade will continue South on Mill then West on Hyman Avenue. Parade participants will be directed to disperse at Hyman and Monarch Street.  PARADE JUDGING: Parade judging will take place in front of the Hotel Jerome. Participants will be limited to 1 minute or less for any performances in front of the judges. Security will be onsite monitoring all entries to help prevent gaps in the parade route. Recognition will be awarded to the best entries in the following categories: 

Most Patriotic | Most Humorous | Best Animal | Best Music | Most Outrageous | Best Children’s  


  • Consumption of alcohol is prohibited during the parade.
  • Candy, favors, etc. should not be thrown from your float/vehicle during the parade. This is for the safety of the spectators and to prevent children from running out into the street. 
  • Water balloons will not be permitted. According to city ordinances, those caught throwing balloons will be removed from the parade and could face citations and/or arrests. 
  • All parade entries must be in “good taste” and will be allowed in the parade per the director’s discretion. 
  • Maximum height restriction for any float entry is 13’5”.


The undersigned organization has elected to participate in the Fourth of July parade sponsored by the City of Aspen and Aspen Chamber Resort Association (“ACRA”). In consideration for City of Aspen and ACRA allowing the undersigned to participate in the festivities, the undersigned has read, understood, and willingly agreed to the terms of this INSURANCE LIABILITY AGREEMENT and WAIVER AND INDEMNITY AGREEMENT (collectively referred to herein as “RELEASE”).


                                    Participants are required to carry insurance adequate to cover any liability for damage, injury, economic loss, or other liability that may be incurred by individuals and/or organizations during the Fourth of July parade. All participants agree to carry such insurance, and also agree not to submit any claim against the insurance of City of Aspen, ACRA and/or any other sponsors of the parade, their officers, directors, agents, shareholders, employees, or anyone else directly or indirectly connected with production of the parade.


                                         The undersigned understands the potential dangers that could be encountered in participating in the Fourth of July parade. The dangers include, among other things, dangers relating to vehicular and pedestrian traffic; crowds of persons in close proximity to such traffic; animals that may react unpredictably in a parade environment; celebration and recreational activities; loud and unexpected noise; items that may be thrown to and from the crowd in connection with the parade; and other dangers traditionally associated with parades.  Understanding those risks, the undersigned for itself and for all persons who the undersigned invites or allows to participate in the parade with the undersigned, does hereby agree to indemnify, hold harmless, and release City of Aspen, ACRA and/or any other sponsors of the parade, their officers, directors, agents, shareholders, employees, and anyone else directly or indirectly connected with production of the parade from any and all liability, claims, demands, actions, or rights of action (including attorneys’ fees and costs) that are related to or are in any way connected with the undersigned’s participation in the parade. By signing this RELEASE, the undersigned intends to extinguish any and all liability and to indemnify against any loss on the part of City of Aspen, ACRA and/or any other sponsors of the parade, their officers, directors, agents, shareholders, employees, and anyone else directly or indirectly connected with production of the parade for any injury or damage of any nature (without regard to negligence or fault) to the undersigned and to all persons who the undersigned invites or allows to participate in the parade.

                                      The undersigned warrants and represents that it will not invite or allow any person to participate in the parade unless such person is bound to the terms of this RELEASE. To that end, the undersigned agrees that it shall take any steps necessary to secure agreement of such persons to the terms of this RELEASE, and that it shall be deemed a responsible person within the meaning of C.R.S. § 13-22-107 and § 19-1103(94) for all children who the undersigned invites or allows to participate in the parade.


   I am the official representative of the undersigned organization. On behalf of the organization, I acknowledge our responsibilities as set forth above. I also accept on behalf of the organization all of the terms and conditions of this



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