Looking to spellbind the community | VailDaily.com

Looking to spellbind the community

Amy Pates
Special to the Daily/Amy PatesA storyteller from Spellbinders mesmerizes the children with a tall tale.

People from all over the valley can attend a storytelling festival that will teach the art of capturing an audience and mesmerizing the crowd with stories from both the imagination and the past. The tale-telling event is Feb. 16 at the Eagle Pavilion at the Brush Creek Park. There is a workshop for adults to learn the art of storytelling. Although it’s an art most of us have practiced our whole lives without even knowing, parents, teachers, seniors and actors of all kinds will benefit from this workshop. The workshop will emphasize folk tales, because they have a distinct and easy structure and participants will learn how to interweave individual experiences into stories. The telling of legends and literary tales will also be addressed.

“The magical experience of listening to stories being told and retold through generations has been lost in our culture and we want to bring this back to our community,” said Linda Mossman, one of the Eagle residents involved in organizing this event. Mossman is a key member of the group organizing the Eagles Nest Community School project, a non-profit organization interested in bringing community-based programs to Eagle. Other goals of the Eagles Nest project are to find a home for the Eagles Nest Preschool, a Waldorf-inspired school, as well as to create a resource center for home schoolers in the community. Mossman sees a community need for high quality preschools, a Waldorf-inspired Charter school, a resource center serving home schoolers, as well as other community interests such as sharing parenting techniques, nutrition for the family, and music, science and art programs.

“We are working to establish a resource center for the community to use for educating and sharing nature-orientated activities with our families. We jokingly call ourselves the Granola Project,” Mossman said.

The Spellbinders’ storytellers are based out of Woody Creek, Colo. Germaine Dietsch founded the national and local Spellbinders program in 1989. Dietsch, with a background in theater, started the Denver program by training more than 60 volunteers in storytelling in 1991. By the year 2000, the program boasted 142 volunteers reaching close to 60,000 attendees at schools, libraries and special events. The program’s mission is “to create connections between generations through the art of storytelling in order to pass on the wisdom, values, humor and sense of community embodied in stories of all cultures and all times.” Those who take the workshop are encouraged to volunteer their time telling stories to others.

The workshop begins at 4 p.m. Feb. 16 at the Eagle Pavilion at the Brush Creek Park. Supervised children’s activities outside will coincide with the workshop. Bring warm clothes for the kids. Infants and toddlers are invited to play inside. The workshop will be followed by a Spellbinders performance for adults and children to enjoy. Adults will have a chance to see how the storytellers engage and mesmerize the children. A special thanks to the Eagle Valley Chamber of Commerce for sponsoring this event. For more information on workshops call 524-0175 or email us at eaglesnest@eagleranch.com.

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