West Chester University's new $1.2 million poetry center will open with a dedication ceremony today, followed by a free poetry reading that is open to the public.

Dana Gioia, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, which helped fund the new poetry center, will read a selection from his poetry at 8 tonight in the Philips Autograph Library. The reading will be joined by a musical performance of songs written by West Chester music faculty based on Gioia's work. The music - piano and vocals - will be performed by West Chester music faculty as well.

Tomorrow at 10 a.m., the poetry center will hold a workshop on NEA Grants, hosted by Rep. Joe Sestak (D., Pa.). This gives those who attend the session an opportunity to learn about NEA funding for regional arts agencies and projects.

West Chester University's Poetry Center is at 823 S. High St. in West Chester.

- Will Hobson