Long Island Authors and Writers Society Members Participate in Major Literary Event


Author members of LIAWS will take part in Riverhead's First Annual Edgar Allan Poe Festival.

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Riverhead, NY - October 25, 2014 - Three authors from the LIAWS (Long Island Authors and Writers Society) will read the works of Edgar Allan Poe and excerpts from their own books during The Edgar Allan Poe Festival in Riverhead. It all takes place October 31, November 1 and November 2 throughout downtown Riverhead.

The three members are Ben Baglio, Valerie Pfundstein, and the Society's president, Tom Gahan. Other authors will participate as well with spooky children's stories, drama, and Poe classics.

That weekend downtown Riverhead will be the stage for a massive Halloween celebration. Edgar Allan Poe will be central to many of the events taking place.  Authors will read and present at various downtown Riverhead businesses.  The festival is sponsored by the Riverhead Business Improvement district and the Town of Riverhead.

Dr. Benedict A Baglio has published several novels to complete a four-book saga of World War II, a period of time which remains his passion and fascination. Baglio is a retired school administrator and educational consultant, holding a doctorate in educational leadership and policy studies and teaches as an adjunct faculty member at Hofstra University.

Valerie Pfundstein is the author of Veterans, Heroes In Our Neighborhood. She has a master's degree in Elementary Education. She uses her love of storytelling along with her love for country and community as a Kindergarten Support Specialist.

Tom Gahan is the author of  Harmony Bay, a slice of waterfront life where mystery surrounds history, a well-received novel. It became required reading at several high schools. He will appear as a character from his novel, Christian Carroll, who returns from the grave to give audiences interactive presentations.  

 "The presentations are for the entire family," says Gahan. "It's all fiction, a little scary, and a lot of fun. It's based on what could have happened during colonial times in Riverhead in a hair-raising way."  

Gahan has received numerous awards for his civic accomplishments including two from the US Congress, the Gold Key Award from the Riverhead Chamber of Commerce, and was named 2009's Civic Leader of the Year by Times Review Newspapers for his humanitarian work on Long Island's East End.

"We are pleased and proud to have our members take part in this outstanding literary event," says LIAWS vice-president Yvonne Capitelli. "We hope to see this event become nationally acclaimed in years to come. LIAWS would like to help make that happen."

The Edgar Allan Poe Festival is taking place under the expert guidance of Sal St. George.  "This will be an event you will not want to miss," says St. George. His original programs have been featured at Disney World, Busch Gardens, and Sea World. He is known on Long Island as the creative force behind Port Jefferson's Dickens Festival and other notable events.

Riverhead's Edgar Allan Poe Festival takes place October 31st, November 1st, and November 2nd throughout downtown Riverhead. All events during the Edgar Allan Poe weekend are free and open to all ages.

Authors will be signing and selling copies of their books.

The Long Island Authors and Writers Society is a not-for-profit 501-c-3 organization dedicated to support and promote the craft of writing through supporting one another, mentoring its members, educational programs, in-school programs, book events and events related to writing, and community outreach to residents of Long Island interested in writing. LIAWS nurtures writers and authors at all levels of development in a mutually beneficial environment. LIAWS: provides a trusting atmosphere where authors and writers can come together to meet their individual needs and share information for the good of the whole, supplies strong motivational programs of interest to all writers, offers the opportunity for members to network on different levels according to their needs, provides an environment that promotes authors, and encourages writers to strive to publish their work. All members pledge to support one another and to be involved in supporting the activities of the organization.

Pictured above: Author Tom Gahan brings literature to life