The night before. The West Virginia Building is serene in the light of a single lamp.
This old building has a unique history, and is made entirely of wood from WV trees.
Here they come! Students files into the West Virginia Building. Storytelling sessions were also held in the big barn at Jackson's Mill.
Storytellers Suzi "Mama" Whaples, Rich Knoblich and Annie Busse pose before the telling starts. They were still smiling when it was over!
Me telling 'Jack and Old Fire Dragaman," one of my favorites. Although I've known the story for years, I've only begun telling it recently. It's fun to get a new story out into performance, and the kids seemed to really enjoy it. This story will continue to grow as I discover new ideas during its telling.
Storytellers June Riffle and Jo Ann Dadisman (the Mountain Echoes) onstage in the barn arena. June and Jo Ann focus on Appalachian stories, and did a lot of audience participation with the kids.
Mama and Annie getting into a story. They tell as a duo too, called The Mountain Women, and also use many participation techniques in their telling.
Ilene Evans and her drum, telling and singing in the West Virginia Building. Ilene is multi-talented: she sings, dances, plays instruments and is trained in drama. She performed stories and songs from Africa.
Storyteller Gail Herman is from Maryland. She is an energetic, lively teller and a pro at engaging children in her stories. Her Three Bears Rap was a real hit.
And then it's over! The buses full of happy children leave, the storytellers pack up and drive home. It was another exciting, rewarding
storytelling advventure for us all. Even though the festival is smaller than ever, it is needed. Children need to hear stories. Adults need to hear stories. And storytellers need to continue to find places and ways to get their stories heard.