About the Festival

The Origins

The Milford Readers and Writers Festival was conceived when, on yet another cold and wet evening in March 2016, literary lawyer Bob Levine, author Suzanne Braun Levine, author Amy Ferris and Milford’s mayor and author Sean Strub had dinner at Bar Louis and 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.

Our first year,  we hosted authors Gloria Steinem, MK Asante and John Berendt as well as Humans Collective. In our second year, Lee Child, Len and Heather Cariou and Robin Morgan graced our stage. Other free events during the festival are hosted by Grey Towers National Historic Site, The Hotel Fauchere and the Patisserie, the Dimmick Inn, the Pike County Library, The TriVersity Center, and The Waterwheel Restaurant.

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 was bought by theatrical casting agent and Milford local, Jerry Beaver, who repaired and renovated the theater 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 now the Milford Readers and Writers Festival is proud to be part of that line-up.

Mission Statement

The Milford Readers and Writers Festival aims to inspire conversations between people who love to read books and people who write them. Building on the timeless tradition of storytelling and the participatory energy of book clubs, we focus on the readers by inviting them to share their insights, queries, and responses directly with the authors.

“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