Entries sought for the Great American Story contest

 2017 Finalists in the Great American Story contest.

2017 Finalists in the Great American Story contest.

You are invited to enter the Park Rapids Lakes Area Arts Council’s third annual Great American Story contest. Judges will narrow the selections to four finalists who will perform the best-told stories at an event Saturday, Sept. 22at Calvary Lutheran Church in Park Rapids.

At the public performance, the audience will vote to select the top two storytellers among the four finalists. The two semi-finalists will be given a prompt and tell a 10-minute extemporaneous story. The audience will then select the winner.

First place storyteller will receive an award of $1,000. Second place will receive $500, and each of the other two finalists will receive $250. Lodging arrangements will be made if needed.

For entry information and rules for the Great American Story, please go to www.thegreatamericanstory.org. Entries no more than 10 minutes in length may be posted online or recorded on a CD or flash drive and mailed. Entry fee is $10. Entries must be posted on the website or, if mailed, postmarked no later than June 30.

Audience members have commented: “Park Rapids is such a thriving artistic community … Bravo!” “Sharing something from the heart and making it real make for a powerful art.” “It takes a special person to tell stories and keep us interested.

The Park Rapids Lakes Area Arts Council serves as an umbrella organization for 16 arts and cultural organizations in the greater Park Rapids area. Representatives from these arts groups, along with individual arts project champions, meet monthly to coordinate arts calendars, share information and incubate interest in new arts projects. PRLAAC also maintains a website - www.prlaac.org - and sponsors successful projects including Art Leap and Noon Hour Concerts.

This activity is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Region 2 Arts Council funded by an appropriation from the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the State’s general fund.

Call for storytellers for Festival of Nations

Again this year, Story Arts of MN will sponsor the Storytelling Stage at the Festival of Nations on May 3-6, 2018 in St. Paul.

Carol McCormick is booking tellers for 30 minute slots sharing stories from their Ethnic Heritage. If you are interested in telling at the FON, please email Carol at  mccobuch@comcast.net with your name, email, mailing address, phone #, available dates and times, and what nation(s) from your family tree that you could represent. Also include if you have stories for family and/or adult audiences. 

Available times and audiences are:

Thursday May 3
10 am to 2 pm School Age

Friday May 4
10 am to 3 pm School Age
6:00 to 7:00 pm General Public
8 to 9 pm Storytelling Concert (3 tellers)

Saturday May 5
10 am to 5 pm General Public
8:30 to 9:30 Ghost Story Concert (3 tellers)

Sunday May 6
Noon to 5:00 pm General Public

Tellers will receive some free passes to the FON and be paid according to the funds available.  (If you're aware of a foundation or nonprofit that might like to support the Storytelling Stage, please let Carol know.)

Ms Banlang David Zander Carol Mc.JPG

Duke Addicks Scholarship Northlands Confabulation! 2018

 

 


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Duke Addicks Scholarship
Northlands Confabulation! 2018

The Duke Addicks Scholarship has been set up to honor the memory of Mentor Duke Addicks, a storyteller well known for his ghost stories, stories from his native heritage, and of Minnesota characters such as Pigs Eye Perrant.  He believed  stories are powerful and can transform lives and communities.  The Duke Addicks Scholarship is intended to assist new storytellers from Minnesota, with a financial need, to pursue their interest in storytelling.  

EXTENDED APPLICATION DEADLINE:  March 31, 2018.

Please provide the following information by email to storyartsmn@gmail.com with SCHOLARSHIP in the subject line. Please submit the application by March 31, 2018

Scholarship funds include conference fee (not including the Friday master class). Meals and Northlands membership are included.  

 Name:

Address:

Phone:

Email:

Employment and/or Student Status:

Birth Year:

1. How did you hear about the Duke Addick’s Memorial Scholarship?

2. Why are you interested in attending the Northlands Storytelling Conference?

3. Describe your experience with storytelling and/or story listening.

4. What do you think you will do with storytelling in your life?

5. Describe in general terms your need for financial assistance?

Information about Northlands and the 2018 Confabulation:
http://northlands.net/

Download Addicks Scholarship information:
http://northlands.net/wp-content/uploads/Duke-Addicks-Memorial-Scholarship-2018.pdf

Read about Duke Addicks' life and work:
https://www.storyartsmn.org/news/2016/12/30/story-arts-remembers-duke-addicks-1

Santa Enchants Children at P.J. Stories

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Santa Claus was the featured storyteller at P.J. Stories in December.  He's shown here with emcee (and SAM president) Pam Schweitzer and two audience members, after the jolly old elf shared a wealth of Christmas lore with eager listeners.  

P.J. Stories takes place on the 3rd or 4th Monday of the month, 6:30-7:30pm, at the Underground Music Cafe in St. Paul.  Check the SAM calendar for dates.  Different storytellers are featured each month.  The event is free for kids and families, although tips are appreciated.  Please join us!  

Call for Storytellers at Festival of Nations

Carol McCormick presents $1,000.00 check to SAM Treasurer Leif Wallin. Carol applied for and received this grant money from Northlands Storytelling Network to help fund the Storytelling Stage at the Festival of Nations (FON) on May 3-6, 2018 in St. Paul.

Carol will be booking tellers for 30 minute slots sharing stories from their Ethnic Heritage. This year Carol is hoping to pair novice tellers with only 10 or 15 minutes of material with experienced tellers.  If you are interested in telling at the FON, please email Carol at  mccobuch@comcast.net with your name, email, mailing address, phone #, available dates and times, and what nation(s) from your family tree that you could represent. Also include if you have stories for family and/or adult audiences and if you can fill 30 minutes or less. Last year in addition to individual teller slots we had a Friday Night Adult Concert, a Saturday Morning Family Concert and a Saturday Night Ghost Story Concert. Tellers will receive some free passes to the FON and be paid according to the funds available. Please let Carol know if you have a foundation or nonprofit to recommend that Carol could apply to for funding this venue.

Festival of Nations Storytelling Stage hours:

Thursday May 3  School Groups only  from 10 am to 3 pm  
Friday May 4  School Groups 10 am to 3 pm; General Public 3 pm to 9 pm
Saturday May 5  General Public 10 am to 9 pm
Sunday May 6  General Public 10 am to 6 pm

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Message from the SAM Board President - November 2017

Hello SAM Members and Stakeholders,

Brrr… it is hard to believe the spooks and goblins just visited and we are quickly on our way to the winter holidays.  The SAM board is working hard and I am writing to highlight a few things that are happening in the SAM community. As SAM president, I will be sending out bi-monthly membership letters.  If you have something that you would like highlighted or know of a member doing interesting storytelling related activities please let us know so we can give that person a shout out to the community.

Story Connections: SAM Meet and Greet
November 14th, 7:30- 9:30, Lynnhall, 2640 Lyndale Ave South, Minneapolis, MN 55408.

You asked for ways to get to know fellow storytellers better, so we are committed to organizing quarterly social events.  Our first will be at The  Lynnhall, 2640 Lyndale Ave South, Minneapolis, MN 55408.  Please stop in for as long as you can. Lynnhall has food and drink available for purchase.

Member Focus:
Dorothy Cleveland’s Wonderful New Adventure

After 40 years of working in administration, Dorothy Cleveland was looking for an opportunity that would allow her to work part-time, set her own schedule, work in her pajamas, and, best case scenario, include storytelling.  She got her wish when she was hired to take on the job of Administrator/ Conference Coordinator for the Northlands Storytelling Network.  Her new job will allow her to combine her love of spreadsheets with her passion for  stories. Dorothy  started September first, and is thankful for a  year long transition period where Karen Wollscheid will coach her through all the many demands of managing membership, serving the board, maintaining the website, and coordinating the popular Northlands Conference.  She asks for patience as she learns the timing of different tasks and becomes comfortable with conference details.  Dorothy is excited to be taking on this new position and looks forward to seeing you all at the April 27-29, Confabulation! 2018 conference being held in Madison, Wisconsin at the Pyle Center.

Not one to sit still during retirement, Dorothy has also just published a new book with Barbara G. Schutzgruber called Beyond the Sword Maiden: A Storyteller’s Introduction to the Heroine’s Journey.  This project started years ago as a thesis for a master's program. As they developed the book Dorothy and Barbara held workshops across the United States to identify questions people had about the heroine’s journey and what readers and storytellers needed from a book.  Beyond the Sword Maiden is a working manual with outlines and examples storytellers can use when writing and telling stories of the heroine’s journey.  Dorothy will be having a book signing party later this year or early 2018. Books are available for pre-order right now.  For more information www.beyondswordmaiden.com

(We have a very diverse membership, all doing exciting things.  If you would like to be highlighted or think another member should be highlighted, please bring them to my attention.  I plan to highlight a different member each letter.)

How Can You Help?

1. Member Bios on the website: Regarding the website, we're already working on  expanding the directory of storytellers (the "Hire a Storyteller" page) and making the calendar a comprehensive guide to upcoming storytelling programs, classes, workshops, and more. Please submit content for profiles and/or calendar entries directly to Sue Searing (suesearing@gmail.com) or Taylor Dobson (taylor.dobson@gmail.com) or use the form on the website (https://www.storyartsmn.org/new-page/).

2. Serve on the Board:  We are currently looking for members who are interested in serving on the board.  If you would like to put your name in for consideration please contact Khary Jackson at shazzalives@gmail.com.

3. A new Website and Social Media Committee is being formed to run down the list of recommendations from the membership and implement them. If you have some skills with social media or websites we can use you. The commitment can vary depending upon your interests and availability.  

4. Social Events Committee
Do you enjoy organizing social events? Have a great place for people to gather? We would like to hold 4 social events in 2017-2018 for SAM members to meet and greet and draw support from one another.  

If you are interested in helping with either of these two committees, please contact Pam Schweitzer at pls2009@live.com .  

The board has set a goal of having 50% of non board members help make SAM run and operate.  Many of the ideas that came out of the listening sessions were outstanding and with your energy and skills we will be able to make many of them happen.  

Yours in Story,

Pam Schweitzer
SAM President
pls2009@live.com
651-724-4723

Message from the SAM board president - September 2017

Hello SAM Members and Stakeholders,

I hope you had a terrific summer and took the time to take in some of the excellent storytelling during the Fringe or at other venues. We finished up our Listening sessions in June and they generated a lot of great ideas. The top ideas include hosting social events which allow the membership opportunities to meet and get to know each other. Another suggestion that surfaced again and again was to beef up our website by adding more content, and by making it more user friendly for both SAM members and the public.

As we head into the Fall, the board will be focusing on making your top priorities in the listening sessions a reality for SAM, but we are a membership run organization, and really need your help.  

How Can You Help?

1. Member Bios on the website: Regarding the website, we're already working on  expanding the directory of storytellers (the "Hire a Storyteller" page) and making the calendar a comprehensive guide to upcoming storytelling programs, classes, workshops, and more. Please submit content for profiles and/or calendar entries directly to Sue Searing (suesearing@gmail.com) or Taylor Dobson (taylor.dobson@gmail.com) or use the form on the website (https://www.storyartsmn.org/new-page/.

2. A new Website and Social Media Committee is being formed to run down the list of recommendations from the membership and implement them. If you have some skills with social media or websites we can use you. The commitment can vary depending upon your interests and availability.  

3. Social Events Committee

Do you enjoy organizing social events? Have a great place for people to gather? We would like to hold 4 social events for SAM members to meet and greet and draw support from one another.  

If you are interested in helping with either of these two committees, please contact Pam Schweitzer at pls2009@live.com 

The board has set a goal of having 50% of non board members help make SAM run and operate.  Many of the ideas that came out of the listening sessions were outstanding and with your energy and skills we will be able to make many of them happen.  

Yours in Story,

Pam Schweitzer
SAM President

Story Arts Remembers Michael Cotter

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Michael Cotter died on July 31 at his home in Austin, Minnesota. He was 86.  Michael was a third-generation Minnesotan farmer who wrote and told stories from his own life, and who helped others discover the healing power of storytelling.

Story Arts board member Loren Niemi shared these thoughts on Michael's passing :

Today is Michael Cotter's funeral. I've known him the entire length of his performing career from his first story in a Goia Tinmpanelli workshop at the 1979 Mythos conference to his first time going to the Mineral Point Festival before it was the Northlands Conference. I drove with him for his first time at the Jonesborough Festival and heard him the first time he told at that festival soon after. 

There is a story about the second time I drove to Jonesborough with Michael with Carol McCormick and Maren Hinderlie, as well. It was the year of the "Bessie Hyde" story - a story in which a new bride has a bad feeling about a journey and a husband who will not listen resulting in their death. I don't remember who told it. What I do remember is that on the way back from the Festival we got into a conversation about the story and its "feminist" interpretations. Maren was at the wheel. Michael was sitting in the back seat, his eyes getting steadily bigger as a silent Maren drove faster - 70, 75, 80 miles an hour - as each comment was made, until finally Michael said as politely as a panicked man could, "Maren, say something or stop the car..."

At every turn his style remained an easy almost offhanded telling of stories where the introduction was often longer than the story but always lead directly to the tale. The content was his life and farming as it was and as it changed over the years. The story of the Killdeer, the trading of horses, or the wanting to be a hero with a front end loader.

He did Two Chairs Telling four times (twice at the jungle Theater, once at Open Eye, once at Bryant Lake Bowl) including a pairing with Colleen Kruse when she made her first appearance. I remeber that he was so in awe of her, so flirtatious and yet so protective all at the same time. Always charming, always willing to laugh at himself, he enjoyed telling and the audience he was telling to.

The last time he did Two Chairs Telling we were talking before the show and he offhandedly began a anecdote about a mistake he made harvesting corn while driving in a computer controlled cab. Ed Jones, who would be in the other chair said, you should tell that when we're on stage. And sure enough, Michael did tell the story again, polishing and tweaking it as he went to make it both funnier and more human in the telling.

His passing at 86 is a real loss. In an era of genuflection at the altar of the Slam, we don't make storytellers like Michael Cotter anymore.

Michael's storytelling accomplishments are highlighted in his obituary in the Austin Daily Herald:

In the 1850s, his pipe-smoking great-grandmother brought her family to America from Ireland’s potato famine and, in 1875, his grandfather broke the Southern Minnesota prairie sod with a team of oxen.  Michael began sharing this legacy when, at 50 years of age, he was introduced to storytelling. His stories of the farm, his strict Irish Catholic upbringing, the hoboes who worked there during the Depression, the animals and their personalities, his Irish sense of humor, and his love and respect for the natural world carried him across the U.S. to festivals, schools, conventions, reunions, workshops, the Smithsonian Folk Festival, and the Jonesborough, Tennessee International Storytelling Festival.  For 22 years he served as artistic director of the Minnesota Storytelling Festival held annually in Austin; for 13 years he hosted “Remember When” on KAUS Austin radio, and for three years the Michael Cotter Show on WHO Des Moines. He is the recipient of the Circle of Excellence Storyteller award presented by the National Storytelling Network. His legacy and stories will continue on through his voice and words on cassette tapes and CDs and in his books.

The complete obituary is available at http://www.austindailyherald.com/2017/08/michael-cotter-86/.  Story Arts of Minnesota joins in celebrating Michael's contributions to the art of storytelling, as we mourn his passing.

Tellers Needed for P.J. Stories

P.J. Stories is a monthly, family friendly venue. Our goal is to promote storytelling for young audiences and to grow young storytelling audiences. Each month (the fourth Monday, 6:30-7:30pm) we feature a storyteller.

If you would like to tell stories at P.J. Stories, please contact Pam Schweitzer at cantenastories@gmail.com.

This is not a paid venue, but it is a great place to practice program material and get your name out there. Several tellers have been hired for other programs after performing at P.J. Stories.

Here's how we describe P.J. Stories on the SAM event calendar:

Appropriate for:  All stories are family friendly and aimed at a school-aged audience.

Tickets:  FREE.  Suggested $5 tip per family.

Location: Underground Music Café, 1579 Hamline Ave., St. Paul, MN 55108

What is P.J. Stories? Some people may confuse P.J. Stories with a peanut butter sandwich because even between stories we squish a lot of fun. Each month we invite a local storyteller to tell some of their favorite stories. We have been fortunate to hear stories from all over the world by storytellers with very different backgrounds and styles. Some tellers use props or even puppets. We even had Santa stop by a few times to tell us about his adventures at the North Pole. Storytellers change, stories change, and styles vary, but one thing always stays the same: P.J. Stories is always fun!

Invitation to SAM listening sessions - June 6 and 17

SAM is holding two listening sessions – please join us!

Tuesday, June 3, 2017
7:00pm-8:00pm
Quixotic Coffee
769 Cleveland Ave S, St. Paul, MN

Saturday, June 17, 2017
9:30am-10:45am
Common Roots Café
2558 Lyndale Ave S., Minneapolis, MN

SAM is an organization which is membership and volunteer driven.  We need to hear from everyone who is passionate about storytelling, so that we can better meet your needs as tellers and listeners of stories.  Please take the time to add your wisdom and energy!