Art Day 2016 and The Art Day Games

August 12th, 2016 — Los Angeles, CA: The second Poetry Competition of the annual Art Day Games, following 4 years on the heels of the first, was held today on Art Day (also known as Artist Day), a global day for artistic expression, 2nd Friday in August.

After BBQ by local New Castle Remodeling and other potluck items brought by guests, after amazing art in wood brought by Sunland resident Rick Bittle, stunning visual art by local artist Jennifer Zapp and Mina Prieto, etc and after delighting neighborhood kids with an arts table and a hunt for art supplies and other small arts items, Becky Mate, Sunland resident and Founder of both Art Day and the Art Day Games, hosted and administered the Poetry Competition at her home in Sunland.

In keeping with four years ago when Dorothy Skiles, then Poet Laureate of Sunland-Tujunga, was the administrator and judge of the contest, contestants were challenged to write an original poem on the spot, not to rewrite a poem they had already written. A mug with the slogan “Celebrate Poetic Moments,” was displayed, in case inspiration needed sparking. This year, there were contestants playing for the USA, Romania, El Salvador and the Ukraine (since they can play for the country where they live, were born, or where a parent was born.) Each contestant received a small prize for participation, and 1st through 3rd place received a basket filled with all types of art.

The Bronze award for the Poetry Competition of the Art Day Games went to Romania, for a poem written by Sunland resident Lucia Moga.

Silver went to USA for the poem by Sunland resident Ed Yerke-Robins, who likes writing poetry because “you can corral thoughts and play with language: rhymes, alliteration, rhythm, metaphor—it’s fun!” Yerke-Robins also said that poetry helps the world by “freed letters, words and ideas from the bonds of practicality.”

Art Day 2015
Becky Mate with Gold Medal Winner, Jewel Steele and Johnnie Ferro

The Gold medal was placed around the neck of Tujunga resident Joe DeCenzo, a past Sunland-Tujunga Poet-Laureate who currently runs the 4th Sunday of the month (4:30-6:30pm) featured and open mic poetry readings at Bolton Hall ( He said, of writing poetry, “I enjoy learning about myself and exploring the varied perspectives of common life events. Audience members will occasionally share memories that one of my poems evoked which is very satisfying. Poetry brings empathy to the world and has imbued the world with insight. A person carries a cherished verse with them as inspiration for life.”

Mate, who currently has two paintings of local Sunland-Tujunga scenes on display at the Backdoor Bakery in Sunland as part of the River Rock Arts Colony August show, said, “Each time artists from different countries come together to share their art and writing, the world as a whole draws a little closer to peace. When Mankind celebrates its artists, their cultures
shine on us all.”

Happy Art Day!


Joe De Cenzo

The moments of my life,
Varied and diverse
Come without warning
Regardless how often I rehearse
They range from anguish to sublime
From wondrous to inane
When the stoic interactions
Turn poetically insane
Most often when my
eyes are closed and
fearing something new
But the greatest insight
Fills my mind when I
Fill my thoughts with you.


Ed Yerke-Robins

In poetic moments
Ink dances across the page
(including the occasional smudge.)
In poetic moments
Incredible ideas sing

In keys high and low.
In poetic moments
Indeed, every moment
Inevitably calls for celebration.


Lucia Moga

Today, we celebrate an Art Day in
Sunland. The owners of the house are
Very nice, working hard for
This special day.
We can admire a lot of pictures
Painted by local artists. Many
Children are happy finding a lot
Of things, having trod and
Admiring the art supplies.
For one, being here the first
Time, was a wonderful day
Meeting a lot of people.
I hope, this activities can
Continue every year.

Contact Becky Mate for more info about Art Day.