Adam Parham just won first place in the Poetry Outloud regional competition. The Pleasant Valley High School senior is excited to move on to the state competition to be held March 26 at the Governor's mansion in Harrisburg.

"It felt really good when I realized I had won," he says, but admits it kind of stinks that not everyone can win because he got to know the other contestants.

"There were really tough performances," he says.

Adam recited two poems he memorized, "Kubla Khan" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge and ""Mingus at the Showplace" by William Matthews and was ready with a tie-breaker, which wasn't needed, "I am the People, the Mob" by Carl Sandburg."

"I'm kind of disappointed I didn't get to recite that one because I love it," says Adam.

One of his literary coaches and PVHS library, Deb Lowenburg says, "When he delivered his poems, he was fabulous. He deserved to win."

She adds that it took a really long time for the judges to decide.

"When Adam's name was announced, I gasped! It was a really great feeling," she says.

Valerie Eblin is his other literary coach.

Adam had to win first place in his school's Poetry Outloud competition before he could go on to compete in the Regional contest at the Allentown Art Museum on Feb. 9. Eight schools were represented from Carbon, Lehigh, Monroe, Pike and Northampton counties.

Adam's love of the dramatic arts probably helped him with his presentation of the poetry he recited. He is a member of PV's drama club and has had starring roles in past performances of "Hello Dolly," "Anne of Green Gables," "Grease," "Princess and the Pea," and most recently he starred as George Bailey in "It's a Wonderful Life." He will play the lead role of Curly in the spring musical, "Oklahoma."

When he's not reciting poetry or acting, singing or dancing, he enjoys hiking and spending time with his family, friends and dog, Bailey.

Adam is the son of Ann and Reuben Parham. He has a brother, Ben. Adam plans to go on to college and wants a career in writing.

His PV fans for teachers, classmates and family will be cheering him on March 26, hoping Adam will be the next Pennsylvania Poetry Outloud champion.