Saturday, June 13, 2009

Lineup for June 15, 2009

This week is a very special one at the Gazebo. We welcome back our dear friends J R Turek, Tom Phelan and Florence Gatto-- all 3 proven crowd pleasers.

Our special treat is this: Max Wheat, the present Nassau County Laureate and Gayl Teller, in what will most likely be her first public reading as the new Nassau County Poet Laureate! An absolutely must-see evening!

The Readings start at 7pm at Schoolhouse Green, located on Foxhurst Road, just east of Long Beach Road, Oceanside NY. For more information, directions, etc. go to

Our line-up for Monday, June 15, 2009:

Max Wheat

We are extraordinarily pleased to host Max Wheat, named two years by his fellow poets as Nassau County Poet Laureate; this month he hands over the reins to Gayl Teller, another reader this evening.. Max is extensively published, and is beloved by the Long Island poetry community.

For his teaching and writing work Maxwell Corydon Wheat Jr. received in 1980 the first Herman Melville Annual Award from the New York State Marine Education Association whose journal, "Ripples," he edited for many years. In November he was given the Art and Literary Award of the New York State Outdoor Education Association, whose former journal, "The Communicator," he co-edited. He is a teacher for Taproot Workshops, Inc., writing for people 55 and older. Spring and fall he teaches a Continuing Education course Monday nights for the Farmingdale schools, "You Can Write Poetry!"

Maxwell Corydon Wheat, Jr. has taken his seventh and eighth grade students in the Farmingdale Public Schools on writing field trips to Long Island's salt marshes in Fire Island National Seashore and Robert Moses and Caumset State Parks. For three years he has conducted an October salt marsh (when the marsh's Spartina grasses turn golden) round-robin participatory poetry reading program at Cedarmere, Roslyn Harbor, home of the 19th Century poet, William Cullen Bryant, where he volunteers in programming. People take turns reading stanzas, particularly those of America's great 19th century work about the East Coast's salt marshes, Sidney Lanier's "Hymns of the Marshes." Wheat has learned much about salt marshes in Nassau County's Cow Meadow Preserve, five blocks from his home in Freeport, where he and his wife, Virginia, enjoy walking. The idea for the grandfather character in the poem he is reading, "Grandfather Loved the Salt Marshes," comes from Alonzo Gibbs' septuagenarian character, Orrie Shadbolt, exploring and adventuring with two teenage friends in the South Shore Long Island salt marshes in his novel, "By a Sea-Coal Fire" (Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, Inc., New York - 1968). (Thanks to for this bio!) Max's website:

Gayl Teller

Appointed as the Nassau County Poet Laureate for 2009-2011, Gayl Teller received an MA from Columbia University and another MA from Queens College, CUNY. Her poetry collections are At the Intersection of Everything You Have Ever Loved, Shorehaven, Moving Day, and One Small Kindness. Her most recent poetry book, Inside the Embrace, was selected in national competition to be published by WordTech/Cherry Grove. Director and founder of the Poetry Reading Series, under the auspices of the New York State Council on the Arts, at the Mid-Island Y JCC, in Plainview, NY, for the past fourteen years, she has been teaching in the English department of Hofstra University since 1985. Finalist for Nassau County Poet Laureate in 2007, she has conducted numerous poetry workshops and seminars and been the feature reader at many universities, poetry centers, and libraries. Her work has received the Edgar Allan Poe Prize, the Peninsula Library Poetry Prize, a National Federation of State Poetry Societies Prize, a National League of American PEN Women Prize, and The Connecticut Writer Prize; One Small Kindness was a finalist for the Blue Light Poetry Prize. Her poems are widely published and anthologized, and her review of poetry books have appeared frequently in Small Press Review.

Tom Phelan

From 063008

Tom Phelan, who was born and raised on a farm in County Laois, Ireland, is the author of the novels In the Season of the Daisies, Iscariot, Derrycloney, and The Canal Bridge. His next novel, Nailer, about a man determined to get revenge, is set against the backdrop of Ireland's abusive industrial schools and the collusion between church and state that allowed them to flourish.

To date, Tom Phelan has seen his works published in four countries and three languages. His first novel, In the Season of the Daisies, was chosen by Barnes and Noble for its Discover Great New Writers series. His most recent novel, The Canal Bridge, was praised by the Irish Independent as a "First World War masterpiece...ambitious, accomplished, and deeply moving." And Books Ireland called it "powerful and deeply affecting."

In 2008,Tom was selected as a Christopher Isherwood Foundation Fellow, one of only five individuals chosen from among several hundred novelists.

J R Turek

J R (Judy) Turek has been writing since she was 5. She is in her 11th year as Moderator of the Farmingdale Creative Writing Group, has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, winner of the Conklin Prize for Poetry, and awarded 1st place in The North Sea Poetry Scene 2009 Poetry Contest. Poetry awards include: Mid-Island Y JCC (1st place 2008), The North Sea Poetry Scene (2nd place 2008), Writer’s Digest 74th Annual Competition (2), Princess Ronkonkoma Productions (2004 - 2008), Towe Auto Museum, Live Poets Society, Lake Ronkonkoma Historical Society, and The Huntington Historical Society. J R is the author of They Come And They Go, who strives to write a poem a day and mostly succeeds.

She is a member of Maxwell Wheat’s Nassau County Poet Laureate Committee, serving as Chairperson for the Nassau County Poet Laureate School Poetry Project, and Editor of Young Voices An Anthology of Poetry by Nassau County Students, which evolved from the contest and includes all 195 award-winning poems. In addition, she has edited and co-edited several poetry anthologies, short stories, and novels.

J R has been published in: 2009 Haiku Calendar; The Poets Art; Grassroot Reflections, Volumes 3 through 11; Long Island Sounds: 2008, 2007, 2006; Performance Poets Association Literary Reviews #8 through 12; primal sanities!; Asbestos; Free-Wheeling: Towe Auto Museum Poetry Collections, 2007 and 2006; Soul Fountain; Friends of Hempstead Plains 2007 Poetry Anthology; The Meadowlark; Long Island Quarterly; For Loving Precious Beast; The Long Islander; the East Meadow Herald; Long Island Expressions Autism Awareness; 2001: A Long Island Odyssey; and the Farmingdale Poetry Chapbook.

Her poetry will appear in: PAUMANOK: Poetry and Pictures of Long Island; Long Island Sounds 2009; Performance Poets Association Literary Review #13; The Long Islander; and Writing Outside The Lines.

She is a lifetime Long Islander who resides in East Meadow with her soul-mate husband, her dogs, and her extraordinarily extensive shoe collection. If you see the license plate MSJEVUS, follow her; chances are, she’s going to a poetry event.

Florence Gatto

From August 18, 2008

Florence is a retired NYC educator. In her new book, The Scent of Jasmine ,Vignettes from a Sicilian Heritage, Florence combines her passion for Italy and writing to document an era of transition for her immigrant family. The true life accounts written with humor, wit, and pride provide a lingering image of life as it was then and how it has evolved ."Jasmine" is in it's second printing, and is available on

Her short stories and essays have been published in LI Writer's Guild anthologies, Newsday and Cucina Classica Cookbook. She writes a column for the Order Sons of Italy in America newspaper "The Golden Lion". She studied in a Fulbright program in Perugia and in Siena with a NY state Teacher's grant. Florence received the Lifetime and Diamond Leadership Awards from LIWriters Guild and L'Esperienza magazine. She now teaches memoir writing to adults.

Florence calls herself an "Italophile" and requires frequent trips to Italy to feed her psyche.

The Readings start at 7pm at Schoolhouse Green, located on Foxhurst Road, just east of Long Beach Road.

The Summer Gazebo Readings are sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Oceanside and are held each Monday evening in June, July and August, featuring 4 readers each evening. Scheduled readers include some of Long Island's most prestigious poets, and fiction and non-fiction writers. The Summer Gazebo Readings are held outdoors; seating is limited, so bring a lawn chair, a blanket, a picnic table. The grounds are open, and the public is encouraged to come early and have a quiet summer's picnic on the grounds. Admission is free.

Sponsors include:
Home & Hearth Real Estate
Herb & Marian Brown
Bonbino's Pizza
North Sea Poetry Scene
Max Wheat NC Poet Laureate Comm.
Maryanne Lehrer
Mary Jane McGrath, Attorney
Gary & Sandie Schoell
Philip Reinstein, CLU
Diversion Press
Oceanville Mason Supply
Kiwanettes of Oceanside
21st Century Appraisers
Village BookShoppe
Long Island Pulse
Westron Lite Bulb
Tower’s Funeral Home
Michael Schamroth and Family
Councilman Anthony Santino
Jay R. Myers & Co., Inc.
Childs Murphy Kuehn & Cesiro,
Municipal Credit Union
Bondi & Iovino, Attorneys-at-Law

Upcoming Schedule

6/22/2009 Richard Vetere Paula Uruburu Tammy Nuzzo-Morgan Louisa Calio

6/29/2009 Brenda Janowitz Ellen Meister Carol Hoenig Saralee Rosenberg (with Debbie Honorof hosting)

7/6/2009 Independence Day celebration with readings from American History & a free barbeque!

7/13/2009 Joan Cergol/Ellen Schaffer John P. Loonam Clive Young Jack Anderson 7/20/2009 Jillian Abbott Reed Farrel Coleman Barbara Reiher-Meyers Roxanne Hoffman

7/27/2009 Authors & Poets from the Long Island Writers' Guild

8/3/2009 Christina Rau Bruce Grossberg Harriet Slaughter Deborah Hauser

8/10/2009 Adriana DiGennaro Teri Coyne Frank Van Zant Joan Marg

8/17/2009 Open Read (must sign up in person at a prior evening's readings) & Betsy Transom & troupe!

8/24/2009 Barbara Hoffman Herb Siegel Christine Timm Joan Dupre

8/31/2009 Sonya Russell Yolanda Coulaz Paula Curci Theresa Rosario- Berzner

For more information:

Tony Iovino
68 Yorktown Street
Rockville Centre, NY 11570
H 516 763-1667
C 516 459-3262
W 516 741-8585

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