Sunday, September 7, 2008

Southern Ohio Festival Report

It was just what I needed: a weekend away in a pretty little town, friends old and new, and lots and lots of stories and laughter.

The weather cooperated--the rain held off until everyone was safely in the Majestic Theatre on Friday, and by Saturday morning the skies were clearing.

The storytellers cooperated too--good tales, music and conversation.

And the audiences responded by listening, laughing at the right places, and apparently having a very good time.

It was a treat to be able to sit and talk with Bil and Paula Lepp, to meet Willy Claflin and Kim Weitkamp, and to reconnect with many of my Ohio storytelling friends.

This year the festival seems to have gotten its feet under it. Attendance was good, and even with the cutbacks at schools re offsite events, quite a few schools brought students for the Friday concerts.

The volunteers who staff the Southern Ohio Storytelling Festival are the real reason for the event's success. They were organized, professional, and there to take care of any problem or answer any question. I felt valued and cared for, and did not have to worry about transportation, food, water or any other detail--all I needed to do was tell stories.

So hats off to Bill McKell and his legions of excellent volunteers, to the people of Chillicothe and surrounding areas who came to the festival, to the sound men for providing great sound and support, and to the other storytellers who made the weekend a real pleasure.

Next year's festival is planned for the same time in September, so get it on your calendar. This is one good event.

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