Big Read Kickoff: A Community Celebration

The Kansas City Indian Center and Haskell Indian Nations University join in launching the Library’s community-wide Big Read 2022, a six-week initiative revolving around U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo’s acclaimed poetry collection An American Sunrise.  

Haskell’s Manny King (Northern Cheyenne) emcees the event, which will includes Native drummers, singers, and dancers. A Muscogee Nation representative will give the welcome address, and a tribal leader will bless the event to kick off the Big Read. 

Harjo, a member of the Muscogee Creek Nation, who was born and still lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is the first Native American to serve as U.S. poet laureate and only the second laureate appointed to a third term. The author of nine books of poetry and two children’s books, she has been inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters and received, among other honors, the PEN USA Literary Award, two NEA Fellowships, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. She appears at a Library event on April 14.  

Copies of An American Sunrise are available for free at the kickoff celebration. The Big Read runs through mid-May, offering speaking presentations, film screenings, and group discussions of Harjo’s book across the Library system and the Kansas City area.  

Explore Big Read 2022 at

Big Read 2022


Big Read Kickoff: A Community Celebration

Date & Location
In Person