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State storytelling fest to run March 8-11 at Civic Center

Profile image for Lucinda Breeding
Lucinda Breeding

The 33rd annual Texas Storytelling Festival will be March 8-11 at the Denton Civic Center, 321 E. McKinney St. 

The event continues its tradition of stories, workshops and activities for children. 

This year's featured storytellers are Adam Booth, Beth Horner, Laura Packer and Tim Tingle. Booth's stories blend mountain folklore and music with an awareness of contemporary Appalachian life and culture. Horner's tales run the gamut from childhood farmyard escapades to eerie folktales of her native Missouri and the occasional bawdy spoof on romance novels. Packer speaks to the experiences of both adulthood and childhood, and Tingle returns to share tales inspired by his deep Choctaw heritage (his great-great grandfather walked the Trail of Tears in 1835 and his paternal grandmother attended a series of Indian boarding schools in the early 1900s.)

The festival features stories, music and — here and there — magical moments. The storytelling concerts are suitable for all ages, though the opening ghost tales might be too intense for some. 

The festival is presented by the Denton-based Tejas Storytelling Association

While select concerts are free, a full festival pass costs $95 with Tejas Storytelling Association Membership,$130 without a membership. For more information, call 940-380-9320 or send an email to 

Individual event prices: 

$10 Concert or Event

$15 Workshop

$50 Master Class

$12 Friday or Saturday Lunch Box and $25 Saturday Dinner

Storytelling Festival Schedule

Storytelling events

*Sign language interpretation included

Thursday, March 8

7 to 9:15 p.m. - *Boot Hill ghost story concert. Free.

Friday, March 9

9 to 10:30 a.m. - *33 in Little D Opening Concert of Featured Tellers

10:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. - Stories North of Ordinary Concert

12:15 to 1:15 p.m. - Lunch and Story Swaps with Judy Allton

1:15 to 2:15 p.m. - John Henry Faulk Concert; Talk of the Town Side Show "Ashton" with Adam Booth (in Denton Women's Club Building, 610 Oakland.)

2:30 to 3:45 p.m. - Two Chairs Telling - Conversation and Stories

3:45 to 4:15 p.m. - Chocoholic Frolic - Treats from Wiseman's House of Chocolates of Hico, Texas

4:15 to 5:15 p.m. - Rising Stars Concert featuring favorite tellers from our guilds. Free. Talk of the Town Side Show: “Country Girl, City Girl” with Beth Horner (Women's Club Building, 610 Oakland.)

5:15 to 6 p.m. - dinner break; Tejas Storytelling Association membership meeting, with board president Richard Nash

7 to 7:30 p.m. - Musical Mayhem with Tom McDermott

7:30 to 10 p.m. - *Quakertown Theatre Concert of Featured Tellers, with Presentation of Marvin Brown Volunteer Award and Special Services Award

10:05 to 10:20 p.m. - After Hours Musical Celebration

Saturday, March 10

9:30 to 10:30 a.m. - *McKinney Street School Show-and-Tell Family Concert. Free.

10:45 to noon - Liars contest, kids’ day activities, affiliate guild meeting and lunch

Noon to 1:30 p.m. - Pizza on the Patio for Kid’s Day participants and their parents; lunch and story swaps with Judy Allton; continued affiliate guild meeting and lunch;

1:30 to 3 p.m. - True Life Urban Legends Story Slam with Shayne Larango and Paul Normandin

3:15 to 4:45 p.m. - City Limits: Fringe Concert. Free.

5 to 7 p.m. - Talespinner Dinner and Silent Auction

7 to 7:30 p.m. - Musical Mayhem - Tom McDermott, silent auction ends.

7:30 to 10 p.m. - *Saturday Night at the Talkies with Featured Tellers;Presentation of John Henry Faulk Award

Sunday, March 11

8 to 9 a.m. - Labyrinth walk. Free.

9:30 to 11 a.m. - *Sacred tales concert. Free.

11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. - *closing concert with featured tellers.

Workshop schedule

Friday, March 9

10:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. - Workshop A: "The Wild and Wacky World of Fractured Fairy Tales" with Marilyn Kinsella

2:30 to 4 p.m. - Workshop B: "Developing Your Five-Minute Story" with Paul Normandin; Workshop C: "Science: Tell It Like a Story" with Fran Stallings

Saturday, March 10

9 to 10:30 a.m. - Workshop D: "Talk, Talk, Take-away"with Tim Tingle; Workshop E:"Start with the Truth: Then Stretch It" with Donna Ingham

10:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. - Workshop F: "Playful Creativity" with Laura Packer; Workshop G: "Walking to find Poems and Stories" with Loren Niemi

1:30 to 3 p.m. - Workshop H: "So You Want to Be a Storyteller" with Sheila Starks Phillips; Workshop I: "Cinematics in Storytelling" with Adam Booth

3:15 to 4:45 p.m. - Workshop J: "Collaboration: How Great Teams Are Made" with Beth Horner; Workshop K: "Folktales, Fairy Tales, and Social Justice" with Sheila Arnold Jones

Sunday, March 11

8 to 11 a.m. - Master Class with Beth Horner for intermediate-advanced tellers: "Powerful Story Presentation: A Coaching Master Class" in the Denton Women’s Building, 610 Oakland. Admission requires separate ticket.

FEATURED IMAGE: Carolina Quiroga-Stultz, a storyteller who shares myths, legends and mysteries from Central and South America in Spanish and English, tells a fairytale during the last concert of the 32nd annual Texas Storytelling Festival in 2017 at the Denton Civic Center in Denton, Texas. Tomas Gonzalez/DRC