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Three MWV non-profits combine efforts for a fun afternoon

Stories by the fire, snowshoeing and good cheer, Jan. 31

On Sunday, Jan. 31, at 3:30 p.m., Arts Council of Tamworth (ACT), Tin Mountain Conservation Center, and the Mountain Storytellers Guild join forces to present an afternoon of New England stories told around the fire in Tin Mountainís Great Room. Will Lange (above) will be one of the featured performers. Courtesy Photo. (click for larger version)
January 21, 2010
Optional snowshoe and story excursions will precede the event. Participants can choose from a family snowshoe with short stories along the way, or an adult snowshoe with a ghostly mountaineering story that takes place on Mount Washington. Snowshoe excursions and use of Tin Mountain snowshoes are included in the ticket price for the storytelling, and constitute at least the bargain of the new decade. Be sure to arrive by 1 p.m. to take part in the snowshoe excursion.

After the excursions, and before the main event, homemade soups, breads, special chocolate desserts, wine, and hot drinks will be for sale. Those who don't want to snowshoe can still come early for a warm meal.

Will Lange's New England roots run deep. A child of deaf parents, he grew up speaking sign language and first came to New England to prep school in 1950 as an alternative to reform school in his native New York State. After 40 years in New Hampshire, he and his wife, Ida, recently moved west, all the way to East Montpelier, Vt. Lange's weekly column, "A Yankee Notebook," has appeared in several New England newspapers since 1981. He's a commentator and host for Vermont Public Radio and both Vermont and New Hampshire Public Television. His annual readings of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol began in 1975 and continue unabated. He's published several audio recordings and five books and received an Emmy nomination for one of his pieces on Vermont Public Television.

Olga Morrill, of Madison, enjoys telling stories to all ages. Her background in theater made storytelling seem wonderfully simple and straightforward to her as both entertainment and communication. In 1990 she became youth services librarian at the Conway Public Library. Storytelling was a natural embellishment for programs there, and she offered storytelling workshops for both children and adults. Thus she met Andy Davis. They co-coached several workshops and began attending storytelling conferences annually. In 1996 they started the Mountain Storytellers Guild with Matt Krug for tellers in the area. Olga has told at state swaps, Sharing the Fire's Northeast Storytelling Conference, schools, and venues around New England.

Physical storyteller David Neufeld brings an original mix of lyrical, zany, and action packed stories to audiences of all ages. He has been described as "a cross between Gary Larson and Mark Twain." His adaptations of folktales transform well-known characters and plots into fresh, modern, romps of acting using voice, illusion, and special effects. His original stories turn ordinary people into comic heroes. Touring internationally since 1979, David has performed for over a million people.

Jo Radner of Lovell, Maine, creates personal tales and stories about the people and history of northern New England. She delights in eccentrics, believes that humor and sadness are good bedfellows, and favors characters whose lives defy simple explanations. Jo is past president of the American Folklore Society and the National Storytelling Network.

Tickets to hear all these wonderful tellers of tales are $15 for adults, $7 for students 13 to 18 and college students with a valid ID. Kids 12 and under are free, but require a ticket reservation to guarantee a seat. If you can only come for the snowshoe, a donation to the Storytellers Guild of $5 per person or $10 per family is requested. For more info and to purchase tickets visit www.artstamworth.org or call 323-8104. Tickets are also available at The Other Store in Tamworth.

This event is made possible through the generous support of sponsors The Brass Heart Inn, Settlers' Green Outlet Village and The Tamworth Inn, co-sponsors Cormack Construction Management and White Mountain Oil and Propane, media sponsor 93.5 WMWV, Magic 104FM and press sponsors The Conway Daily Sun and The Mountain Ear.

Klumb Environmenta;
Varney Smith
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