SOLD OUT: Sip ‘n Spit with Watercolor: An Evening with Urbana’s Poet Laureate

Join Poet and artist Ja Nelle Davenport-Pleasure, along with other Champaign-Urbana spoken word artists for Sip ‘n Spit with Watercolor: An Evening with Urbana’s Poet Laureate from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30 in the Mansion Library.

Participants will enjoy a playful evening of watercolors, poetry and drinks as they paint while listening to a variety of expressive readings by local poets. No previous watercolor experience is necessary to take part. There will be a cash bar.

$20/person (21+ only). Register here by Nov. 24. Registration includes all supplies and one drink ticket. All sales are final.

If you will need disability-related accommodations in order to participate, please email


About Ja Nelle Davenport-Pleasure

Born in Springfield, Ja Nelle joined the Champaign-Urbana community 24 years ago, where she raised her three amazing kids. She has written two books of poetry, “Eyes Open” and “Splitting 650.” Her third, “Breathe,” is scheduled for release in the summer of 2024.

Davenport-Pleasure is a member of the Galaxy of Poets group which brings awareness and support to mental health through the art of words. She performs with Soul on Sunday, a group that enriches the poetry and music scene in Urbana.

She has collaborated with previous poet laureate Ashanti Files to host workshops on poetry and performed alongside another past laureate — Will Reger — in this year’s Central Illinois Rivers in Art and Poetry event.

Ja Nelle is an Artist Ace Award winner who also founded Cinderella/Cinderfella, a ballroom dance troupe for children. She has performed her poetry at SPEAK Café, Pygmalion and other events.

About the Poet Laureate Program 

The Urbana Poet Laureate Program celebrates poetry by recognizing a resident poet who honors and serves our diverse community and elevates the importance of the creative writing art form through sharing their work with Urbana residents. The Poet Laureateship is an awarded position that involves celebrating and showcasing poetry, language, and the arts. Learn more about Urbana’s Poet Laureate Program.

For more information, contact the UrbanaArts and Culture Commission by email at or the City of Urbana’s Arts Program Specialist, Vivian Krishnan at


Nov 30 2023


6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Nov 30 2023
  • Time: 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

More Info