You are here

SWEAT: Kenosha Work Stories

This Fall, Kenosha Public Library is bringing you an exciting series of community programming centering on the Pulitzer-Prize winning play, SWEAT by Lynn Nottage in collaboration with the New York City's Public Theater and several Kenosha community partners. These programs will challenge you to think about your own work stories, as well as the work story of our greater community. Below, you will find the events compiled all in one place for you. Join the conversation and share your story -- we hope to see you there!

SWEAT by Lynn Nottage
Straight from New York City, The Public Theater’s Mobile Unit presents a free performance of the play SWEAT by Lynn Nottage. SWEAT, which was performed on Broadway last year, tells the story of a group of friends who have spent their lives sharing drinks, secrets, and laughs while working together on a factory floor. But when layoffs and picket lines begin to chip away at their trust, the friends find themselves pitted against each other in the hard fight to stay afloat. Recommended for ages 16+.
This event is FREE, but registration is preferred. Register by calling 564-6130 or by clicking HERE.

Tuesday, October 16
7:00 - 10:00 PM
UAW Local 72 Hall
3615 Washington Rd, Kenosha

The Chop: Discussions on Work and Our Community
Join Rob Torres from Beat Council for a discussion focused on themes in the play SWEAT by Lynn Nottage. Let's talk about the ways in which themes of work enter our community and take a closer look through an urban perspective.

This event has been rescheduled. The new date/location are as follows:

Monday, October 8
6:00 - 8:00 PM
Public Craft Brewing


Neon Delight: A Kelly Witte Art Exhibition
The exhibition Neon Delight will feature a new series of abstract paintings created by Racine, WI based artist Kelly Witte. Created with acrylic and aerosol paints these works highlight the use of color, pattern and texture as a way to render a sense of emotion.

All September
Northside Library Display Case

The Work of Art
Artist Kelly Witte will discuss her newest series of abstract paintings featured in the exhibition Neon Delight. In addition she will share her experiences as an emerging artist including the inspiration behind her work, what work means for her as an artist, and the techniques and materials she uses to create her work and other exhibitions in which she has participated.

Thursday, September 20
6:30 - 7:30 PM
Northside Library

Kenosha Works: A History of Local Industry
Join us as a local historian will give a presentation on the industrialization and subsequent deindustrialization of Kenosha. The speaker will also examine what life was like for the people that worked in Kenosha during the time of heavy industry.

Saturday, September 29
2:00 - 3:00 PM
Kenosha History Center
220 51st Pl, Kenosha

Social Justice Book Club Reads SWEAT
This month, the Social Justice Book Club will be reading and discussing the play SWEAT by Lynn Nottage. Join them and tell your work stories while digging deeper into this play and the community conversation.

Tuesday, October 9
12:30 - 2:00 PM
Northside Library

Tuesday, October 23
6:30 - 8:00 PM
Northside Library

That’s How We Used to Do It! Learn to Record Your Family Stories About Work
Your own family tree is full of stories about work! These unique stories provide insight into your values, opportunities and aspirations and are part of our community’s history. Come for a chance to hear stories, and even share your own, as part of a brief tutorial about how to gather, preserve, and use oral histories with Dr. Alison Staudinger, professor at UW-Green Bay. This program is a Shoptalk presented by the Wisconsin Humanities Council.

Thursday, November 1
7:00 - 8:30 PM
Southwest Library

Kitchen Table Conversations: The Working Life
Join KPL and the Kenosha/Racine Poets Laureate Program for an evening of kitchen table conversations - shared stories and poems about life and work.

Wednesday, November 14
7:00 - 9:00 PM
5014 7th Ave, Kenosha

Courageous Conversations: The Effect of Racism on Jobs and Employment
In collaboration with KPL, the Coalition for Dismantling Racism is hosting November's “Courageous Conversation,” this time looking at racism through the lens of work. Bring your perspective and work stories as we continue the work of dismantling racism.

Monday, November 19
6:00 - 8:00 PM
Kenosha County Job Center
8600 Sheridan Rd, Kenosha

Special Thanks:
Kenosha/Racine Poets Laureate Program
Coalition for Dismantling Racism
Kenosha History Center
Rob Torres / Beat Council
Kelly Witte Artist
Wisconsin Humanities Council
The Public Theater


About the Image: Johanna Day and Michelle Wilson (foreground), and Carlo Albán and Miriam Shor in The Public Theater’s 2016 production of Sweat, written by Lynn Nottage and directed by Kate Whoriskey.

Photo credit: Joan Marcus