It may seem a little odd to say it, but a local pub house is Flagstaff’s best place to attend events celebrating the art of the written word. Uptown Pubhouse hosts the Narrow Chimney Reading Series, which features readings from prominent published authors and emerging and student writers as well. The Series was co-founded by Uptown co-owner James Jay with his colleague Jesse Sensibar. Uptown’s literary events are creative, exciting and fun. They host musical acts and even sometimes host art exhibitions for local artists.
Some of the Arts, Literature and Cultural programs and organizations that Uptown Pubhouse has helped to fund and support in 2014 have included the following:
- Hosts the Viola nominated Narrow Chimney Reading Series on Monday evenings. As an alternative to the Monday Night big commercial, television, “sports” program, Uptown presents the Narrow Chimney Reading Series to show case highly talented MFA students from Northern Arizona University’s Creative Writing Program paired with readings and book signings from published, local Flagstaff authors.
- Contributor to Thin Air Magazine, the nationally distributed literary magazine from Northern Arizona University’s graduate creative writing program.
- Contributor to Copper Canyon Press, one of the largest poetry publishers in the nation
- Contributor to Lummox Press, a grassroots blue collar book publisher
- Contributor to the annual Jim Simmerman Poetry Prize for students of Flagstaff high schools.
- Hosts the annual Great Gatsby Night, featuring a plethora of literary readings from the American classic novel, exquisite costuming from that time period, some rather “organic” and fun dance from the Prohibition Era (a complete hoot), and celebrates great literature in a classy and fun manner with its host, the indefatigable, Andres Adauto.
- Hosts numerous book signings and readings from local authors, such as Michael D. Griffiths, and international writers, such as Robin Hemley.
- Boldly hosts the Kilted Zombie Walk, which culminates with a reading and book signing by the gruesomely transformed Celtic scholar, Kenneth McIntosh
- At no commission, sells books and CDs of Flagstaff based writers and musicians, such as Jill Divine and Tom Sheeley
- Hosts the odd, goofy, and educational tributes to a bevy of authors with events such as Bukowski Day, Kerouac/Beat Lit Week, Hunter S. Thompson Day
- Hosts a lecture on the literary, political, and social impact of Irish poet, Bobby Sands.
- Hosts a lecture on groundbreaking feminist poet (and genius), Eavan Boland
- Hosts a lecture on iconic Irish poet, W.B. Yeats
- Hosts the Limerick Poetry Slam during St. Patrick’s Day
- Contributor to Living Traditions, a Flagstaff based live Celtic music program
- With the instruction of Viola Award winner Kari Barton, hosts Irish dance lessons
- Provides the venue for the annual Colorado River Days original song composition contest, hosted by brilliant musician Alicyn Gitlin, which also serves as a fundraiser for the Sierra Club.
- Regular contributor to Razorcake magazine, a nonprofit punk music magazine
- Longtime supporter, financially and through volunteer work, of the Northern Arizona Celtic Heritage Society and the annual Celtic Festival
- Creates fundraisers that combines whisky and spirits tasting and education and donates 100% of the proceeds to organizations such as Big Brothers Big Sisters of Flagstaff, Second Chance Animal Shelter, and the Gaelic Athletic Association of Northern Arizona/the Mountain Hounds Irish Hurling Club
- During the First Friday Art Walk, Uptown regularly hosts visual artists, such as Jeremy Singer, Jerrel Singer, and Chad Lundberg
- Sells tickets, with no commission, for local, cultural events, such as the Robert Burns Supper and Tea with Diana Gabaldon
- Regular contributor to the Northern Arizona Pride Association
- Regular contributor to Theatrikos
- Regular contributor to the Coconino Community College scholarship program
- Hosts historical lecture by PhD History candidate Doug Lintner on “The Battle of Clontarf,” discussing Celtic and Viking culture during the 11th century
- Hosts public scholar, Todd Barnell, and his lecture on the historical origins of the vampire myth and its transformation and morphing into faerie myths in Celtic society.
From their website:
In the tradition of a pub or public house, Uptown hosts a variety of events and activities to promote conversation and camaraderie. We feature monthly poetry readings, book clubs, and literary events such as the famous (or infamous) Hunter S. Thompson Day, Charles Bukowski Day, and Kerouac & Beat Literature week. We’ve had the good fortune of having such writers as Robert Bly, Greg Pape, Tim Seibles, William Kittredge, Annick Smith and numerous others come through our doors. Our readings have also featured prominent local writers such as Jill Divine, 2013 Viola Award Winner Nicole Walker, Marty Sommerness, and Jim Simmerman.