Women’s Imaginative Guild of Storytellers – July 12, 2016

This year’s WIGS (Women’s Imaginative Guild of Storytellers) event at Callanwolde Fine Arts on Saturday, July 12, 2016, will be dedicated to Jane Augusta Lindsey Hinds, who worked tirelessly for WIGS by creating stories especially for the events and doing any other job that needed doing to make the day a success. What memories do you have of Jane that you can share? Please send them to Janice at teachtale@bellsouth.net, or contact her at 404-277-2704, so she can create a fitting tribute to Jane Augusta Lindsey Hinds. To make reservations/purchase tickets, contact WIGS at 404-982-0523 or anngrav2490@comcast.net.

Campfire Story Concert, Sept. 28, 2013

Shivers, goose bumps, spine-tingles – and s’mores of course! You’ll find all of these things at the first annual Campfire Concert beginning at 7:30 PM on Saturday, September 28th at the Dawson County Public Library in Dawsonville, Georgia!

Join us around the campfire in the field behind the library for good, old-fashioned jump stories, music, s’mores and lots of fun! National storyteller Sherry Norfolk will headline the evening, joined by Southern Order of Storytelling members Betsy DotyDebbie Weston FromAnthony Vinson, and Tracy Sue Walker. Because these tales are of the spooky variety, this event is recommended for ages eight to adult.

This special event is being generously sponsored by the Southern Order of Storytellers, McEver Signs, the Dawson County Women’s Club, and Chestatee Regional Library System. This event is FREE! Fun will begin at 7:30 PM with music and s’mores, followed by stories.

So… when the leaves begin to fall and ghosts begin to moan, get ready for campfire story fun! Located in the beautiful North Georgia hills, the Dawson County Public Library is five minutes from the North Georgia Premium Outlets, twenty minutes from Dahlonega, and fifteen minutes from Amicalola Falls State Park. For more information, please contact the Dawson County Public library at 706-344-3690.

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Report from 2013 SOS Festival

~ From Anthony Vinson, SOS President ~

The 2013 Southern Order of Storytellers Annual Storytelling Festival was, in a word . . . . Well, it is actually impossible to describe the festival properly using a single word. I suppose that one might try “Stupendous” or “Superlative” or even “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” – but while one or more of those might capture the scope of the event, it was the individual pieces, performances, and people that made the festival a veritable smorgasbord of story, song, and something special.

The festival kicked off on Thursday night with Stories on the Edge of Night, produced by Shannon McNeal and Stacy Beth Shulman, and held at Manual’s Tavern in Atlanta. The sellout, standing-room-only crowd was treated to an olio of thirteen storytellers. The performers were drawn from contributors to the several “reality storytelling” events that take place monthly around town, those events being Carapace, True Story, Write Club Atlanta, and Stories on the Square. Stories on the Edge of Night performers were selected after having shared a memorable story at one or more of those events during the previous year. The event was created as a showcase by which to introduce traditional storytellers to reality storytellers and vice-versa, since many of the performers were also members of the Southern Order of Storytellers.

The Bard’s Feast and Annual Membership Meeting were held on Friday evening in Decatur. After a catered dinner, outgoing SOS President Janice Butt recognized and thanked the members of the 2012 Board of Directors for their hard work and dedication; they received “Everybody Loves a Storyteller” mugs.

She then introduced the 2013 Board of Directors, including new President Anthony Vinson, who delivered a brief “State of the Story” message to members. Presentation of the Seanachie Awards followed, beginning with a special and long-overdue award being presented posthumously to longtime supporter and member, Sam Goldman. The award was presented by Feriel Feldman to Sam’s partner, Tom Ptaszynski. Next, it was announced that the recipients of the Seanachie Award for the year 2013 were Jan Cribbs and Tom Wallace.

The Friday night Regional Tellers Concert featured Anthony Vinson, Barry Stewart Mann, Eugenia Williams, and Sarah Beth Nelson. Impeccably emceed by Ann Ritter, the concert was a blend of humor, drama, history and ironic hilarity. The stories took us from the bowels of the earth to the forced busing of Florida school students in the 1970s, and provided poignant memories of Martin Luther King, Jr., as well as the unlikely pairing of wisdom teeth and weddings.

Saturday was filled with concerts and workshops. The storytelling sessions offered everything from folktales and fairy tales to ballads and bad puns. Performers included SOS founder Loralee Cooley, as well as three up-and-coming youth storytellers. All of the performers were practiced, polished and ready to perform when they took the stage, and the emcees kept the programs rolling right along on schedule. Workshops for adults were conducted by our headliner Elizabeth Ellis, and by members John Beavin and Sarah Beth Nelson. There were also two workshops for children and youth tellers conducted by Deborah Strahorn and Debbie Weston From; these sessions culminated in a children’s concert featuring performers who had participated in the workshops and emceed by SOS Youth Coordinator, Anne Wallace.

Our featured headliner, Elizabeth Ellis, set a new standard for any performers selected to appear at future festivals and events. Elizabeth attended practically every scheduled event. She also made herself available to members and attendees over the entire course of the festival. She supported and encouraged other performers and freely answered questions, offered advice and insight, and took lots of notes about all the great ideas she received in return. As Elizabeth put it, “I know a good idea when I steal it!” Her workshops were well attended and highly lauded, and her Saturday night concert was remarkable, with a combination of myths, legends, and personal stories.

And let us not forget to thank all of those who selflessly volunteered their time, talents, and hard work to make the festival a success. Led by Ticket Coordinator, Cynthia Rintye, Volunteer Coordinator, B.J. Abraham, and her equally able assistant Feriel Feldman, a small but dedicated group of member-volunteers attended to all the many behind-the-scenes details that made the festival a fun and memorable time for all. And in case you were unable to attend, SOS’s unofficial Official Photographer, David Miller, snapped lots of action photos, many of which will soon be posted at www.southernorderofstorytellers.org.


The 2014 Festival Planning Committee will begin meeting this month to start preparations for next year’s festival, which is scheduled for January 23rd through 25th. We are looking to do something new and different, next year – something you won’t want to miss! So please mark your calendars for January 23-25, 2014, and plan on being there.

Tellabration! News

‘Tis the season! TELLABRATION!™ is a worldwide storytelling event hosted in communities around the world. Traditionally, all events are held the weekend before Thanksgiving but, with increased interest, events have spread into the first weeks of November. It creates a network of storytelling enthusiasts bonded together in spirit at the same time and in the same month. It’s a great night for story listeners, young and old, harkening back to those days when you listened to the family stories on Grandma’s porch. See below for statewide TELLABRATION!™ events, in chronological order.

  • Thursday, November 1 – Storytelling for All Ages will be featured at the Southern Crescent Storytellers’ second annual TELLABRATION!™, at 6 PM at the Fortson Public Library, 61 McDonough Street, Hampton, GA 30228. FREE admission. For additional information, contact Anne Wallace at 770-460-9946 or Anne50W@aol.com. (Click here for a flyer.)
  • Friday, November 9 – Emerging Voices YOUTH TELLABRATION!™ will feature youth storytellers from the City of Atlanta and from DeKalb, Coweta, and Henry counties. It will be held at 7 PM in the Callanwolde Mansion at the Callanwolde Fine Arts Center, 980 Briarcliff Road, N.E., Atlanta, Georgia 30306.Tickets will be sold at the door: $3 for general admission and $1 for children. For more information, call 404-872-5338.
  • Friday, November 16 – Roswell’s TELLABRATION!™ will be held at 7:30 PM at the Roswell Adult Recreation Center, 830 Grimes Bridge Road, Roswell, GA 30075. Admission is $5.00 per person at the door; no advance sales. Storytellers will be B.J http://ukviagras.com/ed/buy-viagra-online-uk/. Abraham, Frank Causey, Brad Corbin, and Natalie Jones, with emcee Ron Kemp. Call 770-640-3253 for more information. (Click here to view separate article.)
  • Saturday, November 17 – Atlanta TELLABRATION!™ – The Southern Order of Storytellers (SOS) presents its 23rd annual TELLABRATION!™, featuring national teller (and SOS member) Andy Offutt Irwin and SOS storytellers Betty Ann Wylie and Alice Henry, with Tracy Walker as emcee, at the Friends School of Atlanta, 862 South Columbia Drive, Decatur, GA 30030. Doors open at 7:30 PM and storytelling begins at 8:00 PM. Onsite parking is available and is free.  (Click here to view separate article.) TICKETS are general admission and may be reserved in advance through Shannon McNeal, the director of TELLABRATION!™, at ShannonMcNeal@att.net or 404-626-4453. A limited number of tickets will be available at the door. Tickets are available online. Ticket prices through November 7 will be $10 for SOS members only and $15 for all non-SOS members. After November 7, all tickets will be $15. (Editor’s Note: We welcome you to join SOS now, via the website, and get a $5 discount on your ticket plus all the other benefits of membership!) 
  • Saturday, November 17 – In Augusta, Georgia, the Tellers of Two Cities troupe will host their TELLABRATION!™ at 7:30 PM at the Summerchase Clubhouse, 3200 Summerchase Circle, Augusta, GA 30909. Tellers will include Mary Gene Cotten, Christian Cotten (age 12), Charlie Cotten (age 9), Casey Cotten (age 9), Jean Embry, Lynn Jaffe, Don Mitcham, Gale Wilkins, Deborah Winkler and Bob Linsenmayer. Admission is FREE and desserts will be served at intermission! For further information, contact Bob Linsenmayer at rlinsenmayer@wctel.net.

Dead Bird Singing, Oct 27 & 28

Ladies and Gentlemen! Boys and Girls of All Ages! (Well, at least those 13 or older.) We direct your attention to the weekend of October 27th and 28th when Kim Weitkamp’s Halloween Spooktacular Dead Bird Singing Tour wings its way to Atlanta for two (count ‘em – two!) shows.

Kim will be returning to Atlanta after her triumphant debut here in June, bringing along spooky, scary, ghostly, ghastly stories from her best-selling Head Bone Rattles CD, as well as selections from her latest collection of eerie tales, Dead Bird Singing, to be released just in time for Halloween.

Regional performers and SOS members Shannon McNeal and Anthony Vinson will be joining Kim onstage for the metro Atlanta shows.

This is a “must-see” show for storytellers and story lovers alike, especially those who fondly remember the goose-pimply delight of swapping scary stories “back in the day.” So forget about those silly old synthetic haunted houses and safe “trunk or treat” events this year; instead, truck on over and treat yourself and your family members to an evening (or two) of good, old- fashioned ghost stories.

IMPORTANT: Please note that this show is not recommended for children under the age of 13!

Saturday, October 27 – The Friends School of Atlanta, 862 South Columbia Drive, Decatur, GA 30030 – (404) 626-4453 – 8:00 PM

Sunday, October 28 – The Red Clay Theatre, 3116 Main Street, Duluth, GA 30096 – (404) 478-2749. – 7:00 PM

*To find out more and get your tickets before they disappear, visit www.spooky-stories.com.

Roswell’s Tellabration! Nov 16

Roswell Tellabration!
Friday, November 16, 2012, 7:30 pm
Roswell Adult Recreation Center
830 Grimes Bridge Road
$5.00 per person – sold at the door
call 770-640-3253 for information

Tellabration! is a worldwide storytelling event hosted in communities around the world. Traditionally, all events are held the weekend before Thanksgiving. It creates a network of storytelling enthusiasts bonded together in spirit at the same time and on the same weekend. It’s a great night for storylisteners, young and old, harkening back to those days where you listened to the family stories on Grandma’s porch.

BJ Abraham
Frank Causey
Brad Corbin
Natalie Jones

Emcee: Ron Kemp