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Bughouse: The Voice of A New Generation

July 28 @ 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Calling all youth thinkers, activists, orators, artists, poets, dreamers, and doers.

Join the Bughouse Youth Soapbox at the
2018 Bughouse Square Debates!
Saturday, July 28 from Noon to 4pm
Register to speak. It’s a snap.

Totally Free

Exercise your First Amendment rights at historical Washington Square.

Ground Rules:
Speeches under 3 minutes.
Participants under 25 years old.
Solo, pair, team, whatever. Bring it.
Your words or someone else’s with attribution.
Competitive, if that moves you.
Hate has no home here. Racist, sexist, homophobic, gender-biased, ableist, or otherwise derogatory speech that is degrading to any specific group of people will not be tolerated.

Truth and justice will prevail.

Full Event Schedule
12pm Live music from Environmental Encroachment
1pm Welcome Rick Kogan, Master of Ceremonies
1:10pm Presentation of the 2018 John Peter Altgeld
Freedom of Speech Award to the University of Chicago
on behalf of President Robert Zimmer
1:25pm Performance by Genesis Academy Summer Institute Students
1:35pm Main Debate
2:30pm Soapbox Speeches, including the Youth Soapbox
organized by students from GCE Lab School
3:30pm National Youth Poet Laureate Patricia Frazier performs while the Soapbox Judges make their decision
3:45pm Dill Pickle Awards to the Soapbox Champion and category winners. The Windy City Pickle Speaker of Truth Youth Bughouse Award to Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Edie Canter, Executive Director of the Chicago Debate Commission.

Catch the Newberry Book Fair before or after the Bughouse.
Food Trucks from: La Cocinita, Gobble Doggs, and Itsapop

Have an organization or cause that wants to table or sample? Give a shout to: publicprograms@newberry.org 312-255-3610.

Learn more about the history of Bughouse Square Debates and the famed Dill Pickle Club at newberry.org

GCE Lab School is an independent High School that cultivates global citizens ready to meet the challenges of the 21st century. Through blended, project-based learning, we foster a diverse community of learners who use the city as a classroom to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to courageously take action locally and globally.

Supported by a grant from the Chicago Free for All Fund at the Chicago Community Trust.


July 28
12:00 pm - 4:00 pm


Gather Activism
Newberry Library
GCE Lab School


Washington Square Park
901 N. Clark St.
Chicago, IL 60610
+ Google Map