NACOGDOCHES, Texas — The Stone Fort Museum on the campus of Stephen F. Austin State University will host an evening of poetry, food and traditional crafts during “Esperanza’s Night Out” beginning at 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 22. 

The event is being held in collaboration with the Nacogdoches Public Library’s Big Read grant and is an exploration of Sandra Cisneros’ novel, “A House on Mango Street,” and the novel’s heroine and narrator, Esperanza Cordero.

Following popular themes from the book, participants will try the refreshing beverage agua fresca de mango, learn to use mango skins to dye textiles and try their hand at calligraphy. They also will get a chance to find Esperanza’s office in the temporary installation, “Click, Clack, Interact,” to write their own vignette on a vintage typewriter. 

Attendees can enjoy a poetry slam or participate in a competition to speak out like Esperanza. Register as a contestant for the poetry slam at the museum on the day of the event. For more information on cash prizes and guidelines, call the museum at (936) 468-2408 or visit

SFA students in the School of Human Sciences’ hospitality administration program, led by faculty members Drs. Donna Fickes and Gina Fe Causin, will provide refreshments.

The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest and is designed to broaden our understanding of the world, communities and ourselves through the joy of sharing a good book. The program’s goal is to inspire conversation and discovery among community members and revitalize the role of reading in American culture. 

The event is free and will be held inside the museum and underneath a tent on the north lawn. For more information or to volunteer to help with the event, contact