About the Festival

The Origins

The Milford Readers and Writers Festival was conceived when, on a cold and wet evening in March 2016, at Bar Louis a core group of literary fans fantasized about the possibility of creating a literary festival in Milford. Less than six months later, with a group of intense volunteers and collaborators, the fantasy became reality and Milford staged its very first Readers and Writers Festival during the first weekend of October, with a star line-up of authors, poets, performers, chefs, gardeners, conservationists and more.

The Milford Theater hosted authors Gloria Steinem, MK Asante and John Berendt as well as Humans Collective. Grey Towers National Historic Site, The Hotel Fauchere and the Patisserie, the Dimmick Inn, the Pike County Library, The Waterwheel Restaurant and Bar, and The Columns Museum hosted the panels and special events.

Since that first year, we have brought such luminaries to our stage including Alan Alda, Lee Child, Anne Perry, Len & Heather Cariou, and more. Our goal remains to serve Milford by hosting this event every year in order to bring writers and readers together in an intimate setting.

The Milford Theater first opened a century ago as a silent movie house. When talkies replaced silent films, the theater was updated with a sound system and remained a popular destination until TV took over in the sixties after which attendance diminished and the theater fell into disrepair. Fifty years and several owners later, the theater has been transformed and renovated without ruining its integrity and character. The theater is used for the annual Black Bear Film Festival, the Milford Music Festival, Kindred Spirits, special events, performances, and screenings and the Milford Readers and Writers Festival is proud to be part of that line-up.

“In an exquisite scenic enclave only a stone’s throw from New York, Milford’s increasingly popular Readers and Writers Festival has become one of America’s most stimulating literary venues–for first-rank authors, would-be authors, and the reading public.”

-John Berendt
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil