Reading Series Census: Pershing Fields Garden Friends Benefit Reading

By on Thursday, March 14th, 2019 at 9:15 am

The New York City Reading Series Census is an ongoing project to catalogue the contemporary literary scene. Any reading series curator in the New York area can take the survey here.


What is the name of the series, and what is the significance or meaning of the series name?
Pershing Fields Garden Friends Benefit Reading

Who founded the series, and who runs it now?
Laura Skolar & Debby DeVenezia. I (Mauro Altamura) schedule the readers and music now; Laura and Debbie handle the other aspects.

What genres or mediums does the series include?
All types of writing: poetry, fiction, nonfiction. We also have live music, solo or small group.

What is the format of the series?
A reader, music, a break, another reader. It’s a social time, mostly attended by local residents and members of the Pershing Field Garden Friends.

Where does the series take place?
Jersey City Heights, currently at Froth on Franklin Street.
85 Franklin Street
Jersey City 07307.
It’s been held at neighborhood coffee shops over the years and a beauty parlor once.

When and how often is the series performed (and is it seasonal)?
Three times per year, March, June, and September, close to the seasonal changes.

How long has the series been active?
Approximately 3 years.

Where can people find information about series on the web?
Pershing Fields Garden Friends on Facebook

Do you take submissions, solicit material, or a combination?
Always looking for readers and musicians.

Did you set out with specific goals when the series was launched and have they changed over time?
To have a cultural event for the PFGF and to raise a little money.

What distinguishes the series from others?
This is a benefit, so there’s an admission charge of $16. A good coffee or tea and some pastry are provided for attendees. There have been great readers, many from Rutgers MFA program and others, too. Some really good music as well. The Garden Friends are an appreciative group of listeners. Musicians get a small stipend, approx $75, a bit more if there are more than one performer.

The next event is scheduled for March 22, 2019 at 7 p.m., at Froth on Franklin, 85 Franklin Street, Jersey City, NJ 07307 with readings from Andy Gallagher and Matthew Binder and music by Ariel Guidry and Alex Heitzenrater.

English Kills Review is an online magazine covering books, authors, and writing with an emphasis on New York City. Founded in 2012, English Kills Review engages the literary community while highlighting noteworthy books and authors