On the Road Marathon – March 10, 2018

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Lowell Spinners Kerouac On the Road bobblehead. Photo by Meghan Moore

Lowell Spinners Kerouac On the Road bobble-head. Photo by Meghan Moore

On Saturday, March 10, 2018 the library organized a marathon reading of Jack Kerouac’s On the Road as part of the Kerouac birthday weekend celebrations. (Jean Louis Kerouac was born in Lowell on March 12, 1922).  This marathon reading was the first in what we hope will become an annual tradition for Lowell and the larger world of Kerouac fans.

Dana Colley playing the Invocation Photo by Meghan Moore

Dana Colley playing the Invocation Photo by Meghan Moore

Celeste Bernardo reading. Photo by Meghan Moore

Celeste Bernardo reading. Photo by Meghan Moore

Photo by Meghan Moore

Photo by Meghan Moore

Rosemary Noon and Celeste Bernardo

Rosemary Noon and Celeste Bernardo

The marathon began in the Kerouac corner on the first floor of our library at 12pm with a saxophone invocation by Dana Colley (Morphine / Vapors of Morphine). The first “ride” of the marathon was filled with individual VIPs from Lowell, a team from The Pollard Memorial Foundation board, and a team from Lowell High School.

Reading at Gallery Z. Photo by Sean Thibodeau

Reading at Gallery Z. Photo by Sean Thibodeau

Sue Kim and Tony Sampas from UMass Lowell. Photo by Sean Thibodeau

Sue Kim and Tony Sampas from UMass Lowell. Photo by Sean Thibodeau

The marathon then went out on the road in true Sal Paradise fashion. A second leg of the marathon at Gallery Z lasted from 4pm-7:45 and featured teams from Lowell Celebrates Kerouac!, Middlesex Community College and UMass Lowell as well as visitors from as far away as Montreal.

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Readers at UnchARTed. Photo by Amy Woo

The last ride began at UnchARTed gallery shortly after 8PM and lasted until 11:30PM, ending with a performance of the final passage from local actor and playwright Jerry Bisantz.

All told over 100 people read for over 11 hours worth of material. Some hearty souls took in the entire reading, but most came and went as they saw fit. There is no way to adequately thank all the volunteers, participants, partners and sponsors in just this message but please know we are grateful. This event was a lot of fun and we look forward to next year. SEE YOU THEN!!

A full reader program is available here. You can look at our photo gallery of the event here. More info about this event and sign ups for next year will be available on our website.

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