Running since May 9, 1980, the Tree Reading Series (Tree) is one of Canada's longest-running literary events and an essential part of Ottawa's vibrant literary community. [Only Harbourfront (Toronto) and Yellow Door (Montreal) have run longer.]
Tree is a non-profit organization that supports an array of established and emerging writers from Ottawa and across Canada by offering a supportive public venue for writers to present their own work and to benefit from exposure to the work of other writers.
In providing this service, Tree hopes to inspire and sustain the development of the literary community in Ottawa and to promote Ottawa as an important community for Canadian literary arts. We aim to reflect the diversity of CanLit including queer voices, people of colour, native writers, reflecting people from across the gender spectrum with writers of different classes and backgrounds.
On the second and fourth Tuesday of each month, we meet to enjoy a reading of poetry (and sometimes prose) from one or more of Canada’s many talented writers. Each Tree evening also includes an open-mic segment where local writers read their own work.
Tree offers a one-hour poetry workshop starting at 6:45 every Tree evening. The workshops are open to everyone and are offered free of charge.
Tree prides itself in offering emerging writers a stage upon which to present their work – through not only its open-mic sets, but also readings by writers with their first publications, and a night each year celebrating “Hot Ottawa Voices” – promising Ottawa writers who have not yet published a full collection.
The directors of Tree acknowledge our duty of care toward vulnerable persons, whether among Tree’s staff, guests, or audience. Abuse of any kind at Tree events will not be tolerated.
Tree is an inclusive and welcoming environment for those of all places on the gender spectrum, all ages, those neurotypical and not. In the community we watch out for one another and intervene should boundaries be challenged so that all can have access to the poetry community. Please note we are a scent-free space.