‘Judas Goat’ celebrates 50 editions

WSC Writing Club holds a successful English Festival after four year of being a part of the campus community

Erika Schwartz, Staff Writer

To celebrate the 50th edition of WSC’s literary magazine, The Judas Goat, and gather the creative writing minds on campus, the Wayne State College Writing Club held the Fourth Annual English Festival last Wednesday.

The idea of an English Festival formed when Writing Club President Stephanie Hempel decided WSC should have a Writing Club during her freshman year.

“I told Dr. Stephanie Marcellus about my idea and she helped me create the writing club,” Hempel said. “So we were talking about things we could do and the idea stemmed from just getting a bunch of creative people together to ignite their potential. Writers are such great, strong people and when they are in one room it is overwhelmingly beautiful. They all blossom and flourish.”

Hempel said the first few English Festivals didn’t bring in many attendees, but the club continued to host the event.

“We kept trying and trying and this year, the fourth one, went fantastic,” she said. “We had the most people we have ever had, and the best theme we ever had.”

The festival’s theme was a half-century birthday celebration of the Judas Goat literary magazine and Nebraska’s 150th year as a state through the anthology The Flat Water Stirs. The festivity was complete with birthday cake and ice cream, as well as prizes, crafts and a book swap.

Additionally, the event showcased writers who will be published in this year’s Judas Goat, followed by an open mic.

“I think the open mic is a wonderful opportunity for people to share their work and hear the work of other people,” Writing Club adviser Marcellus said. “We had such a variety of different genres—we had creative nonfiction, poetry and we had fiction. There were a lot of different topics, too, and I think the open mic just shows the richness and the variety of writing we have on campus.”

The highlight of the evening, however, was the Judas Goat panel. The writing club invited the current faculty adviser of the Goat, Chad Christensen, as well as past advisers JV Brummels and Gilbert Vaughn, to present a history of the magazine. Students and other attendees heard about the early days of the Goat, as well as memories and anecdotes that stemmed from publishing it for 50 years.

Every Judas Goat ever published was displayed for people to discover throughout the festival.

“It’s just something that we wanted to celebrate because it has really done a lot for our department and a lot for our students,” Hempel said. “There have been a lot of creative minds published in it throughout the years. The celebration stemmed from the celebration of the Goat in all of its glory.”