The Sandbar Storytelling Festival, the first of its kind in Minnesota, will premiere in Winona from October 13-15, 2022. With a mission to promote the art of storytelling for all ages, this three-day event will include exciting performances and captivating chronicles. by renowned international storytellers.
In addition to the two-day public festival on October 14 and 15, which will include food, workshops, concerts and – of course – storytelling at Saint Mary’s University, several events are also planned for schools, universities and other Winona venues on Oct. 13.
The public is invited to join in celebrating and preserving the power and pleasure of our diverse cultural traditions and human experiences.
The idea for this event was born with Winonan Hywel “Taff” Roberts, president of the Sandbar Storytelling Festival. Looking back on particularly significant periods of his life, Roberts was inspired to explore an annual gathering to promote the art of storytelling “as a means of teaching, understanding, respecting and appreciating other cultures, nations , races and religions”.
The inaugural list of festival storytellers will include:
Bill Lepp — five-time West Virginia Liars Contest champion. Although he is a champion of lies, Lepp’s stories often contain bits of truth, which present universal themes in a clever and witty way. Her children’s books and audio collections have won numerous awards. He was featured and guested on NPR’s Mountain Stage.
Caroline Quiroga-Stultz — a Colombian social communicator who earned a master’s degree in storytelling from East Tennessee State University in 2013. His bilingual stories explore Native American and Hispanic myths, legends and mysteries. She is one of four teaching artists selected to undergo a year-long residency by the Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning through ArtsFound in San Antonio.
Reverend Robert Jones Sr. – a Detroit native and inspirational storyteller and musician celebrating the history, humor and power of American Roots music. For more than 30 years, he has entertained and educated audiences of all ages. At the heart of its message is the belief that our cultural diversity tells a story that we should celebrate, not just tolerate. He has recorded six albums of original and traditional songs and is the former host of award-winning radio shows on Detroit Public Radio’s WDET-FM Detroit.
Alton Takiyama-Chung — Chairman of the Board of the National Storytelling Network. Takiyama-Chung grew up hearing the stories, superstitions and magic of the Hawaiian Islands. It tells the stories of the plantation era, the Japanese-American experience of World War II, Asian folk tales, Hawaiian legends and ghost stories. He has been a guest storyteller at many international storytelling festivals.
Regi Charpentier — the youngest daughter of a family throbbing with contradictions. She will share these contradictions, described as religious and rowdy, tender but terrible, unfortunate but irrepressible. These tales celebrate the lives of four generations of carpenters in Clayton, New York.
Mark your calendars and watch for upcoming storytelling events. Tickets will go on sale later this spring. For more information, visit https://sandbarstorytellingfestival.org.