Story Crossroads: The Newsletter (Vol. 2, Issue 1)

Published: Fri, 08/19/16

Story Crossroads: The Newsletter
I have a story.  You have a story.  We all have stories.

Volume 2, Issue 1
What to Expect
Know the traditions for each newsletter.
Steve Evans picture

Some traditions include:
*  Latest News of Story Crossroads
*  Cap's Off to You! (people profiles who use story)
*  Story Video (created or loved by us)
*  Story
*  Story Game (inspired by different cultures)

About Story Crossroads
What is Story Crossroads?
Steve Evans picture
Story Crossroads is a free grassroots event that features 50 professional story artists as well as 80 community members telling for the main stage event.  Youth, community, and seniors will be taught through free storytelling residencies at libraries, schools, and other venues by certified story-teachers in preparation for this celebration.  Bilingual and cultural performers combine arts to bring the stories forward for the audience.  Enjoy stories told with ancient technique while simultaneously enjoying newfangled approaches to these traditions.  The inaugural Story Crossroads Festival launched April 15-16, 2016 while the second one is on April 20-21, 2017 at the Viridian Event Center (8030 S. 1825 W., West Jordan, UT).  Then, with an invitation extended across all borders, World Story Crossroads launches 2022.  

Latest News
Celebrating Our Inaugural Festival
Featured Outreach Tellers-Christopher Agostino, Joseph Sobol, Baba Jamal Koram
Dreams came true during the inaugural year of the Story Crossroads Festival at the Viridian Event Center in West Jordan.  Thank you to the many people who volunteered as well as performed.  We appreciate the talents of Christopher Agostino, Baba Jamal Koram with Baba Kenyattaa, and Joseph Sobol plus the other professional, community, and youth tellers.   Several audience members noted and loved the diversity of cultures, languages, and generations on stage.

We had 1,305 students attend for field trip, and overall we had 2,287 people come.  Due to the field trip response, thanks to John Adams, we are changing the event from a Friday-Saturday to a Thursday-Friday period on April 20-21, 2017.  We had coverage of the event by six different media groups and connect us to current and future audience members.

We appreciate fiscal sponsorship from the Utah Storytelling Guild as well as funding from:  National Endowment for the Arts; Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF); Utah Division of Arts and Museums; Utah Humanities; Nubian Storytellers of Utah Leadership (NSOUL); Salt Lake City Arts Council, and many other individuals.  During the first year, we gave the gift of free admission to everyone.   To be a strong and sustainable event, the 2017 Festival will sell tickets that are affordable with $1.00/student or senior citizen and $3.00/person.  

No price can be placed on the experience one receives when hearing stories that have the power to change the world one smile, one tear, and one laugh at a time.

Youth Teller Reunion
Youth Teller Reunion
On June 4, 2016 we had the first of many Youth Teller Reunions.  Families gathered at the Boondocks Fun Center and played storytelling games, won prizes, and ate plenty of candy.  We then took to the arcade games, miniature golf, laser tag, and air hockey.  Welcome, youth, to the Story Crossroads Family!​​​​​​​
House Concerts - Past and Future
House Concerts images
We are going on our 6th House Concert that is part of the Story Crossroads Fundraising Series.  Each featured story artist have been exceptional.  People huddled around the fire as Stephen regaled everyone of tall tales and ghastly ghosts.  People clapped along as Paul Boruff sang songs and pulled our legs a few times.  People found the delight in tandem telling by Rachel Hedman and Holly Robison.  Some house concerts are more crowded than others though what remains the same is the quality of telling.

Want to come?  You are always welcome.

Next House Concert:  Friday, August 19, 2016 from 7:00pm-8:30pm
Featured Teller:  Karl Behling

Theme:  American Heroes:  Don’t Let Them Be Forgotten

Where:  Hedman Home, 4835 Sunset Park Lane, West Jordan, UT

RSVP:  Rachel Hedman at (801) 870-5799, call or text

Suggested Donation:  $10.00/person, though any teen or adult welcome, CDs available for purchase

Details:  Refreshments served

Purpose:  This fundraiser event is held so the Story Crossroads Festival remains strong (see, can also donate online whether or not you can attend)

Too soon (or too late) to plan on August 19?  We will have another House Concert in September featuring Janine Nishiguchi.  Check the Story Crossroads website as details finalize.

Join Us for 16-hour course--Being a Story Guide for Others
Sam Payne and Suzanne Christensen
One or two-hour workshops still hone skills yet nothing compares to dedicating 16 hours to the art of storytelling.  Sam Payne and Suzanne Christensen work together all the time as performing artists and directors.  Their secrets can now be your secrets.  Learn how to guide others in the art of storytelling while honing your own skills.

This 16-hour course helps beyond the art and into any area of your life.  The dates of this course are (must attend all four):  

Friday, September 16, 2016, 10:00am-2:00pm

Monday, September 19, 2016, 10:00am-2:00pm

Friday, September 30, 2016, 10:00am-2:00pm

Monday, October 3, 2016, 10:00am-2:00pm

Where:  Eastmond Home, 3001 E. La Joya Dr. (4310 S.), Holladay, UT
Cost:  $320.00/person with debit, credit, or check options, includes storytelling book of your choice, plus payment plans available so it can be divided into 12, 10, 6, or 2 times over the course of a year
Limited Space:  Caps at 15 people, register online to reserve your spot
Questions:  Email [email protected] (though FAQs on the website)

Be a 2017 Story Artist for the April Festival

Be a 2017 Story Artist—Application due October 1, 2016
Format:  Complete online Google form or ask for Word document application by emailing [email protected].  Find the online form at under “Get Involved” and then “Be a Story Artist for April Festival."

If you have applied or have told during the inaugural 2016 Festival, then you can send an email to [email protected] with indicating that you wish to be considered and give any updates to your contact information, bio or any new video links.  If all information remains the same, then simply send the email to put you on our radar.

Go directly to the "Be a Story Artist for April Festival" page on Story Crossroads website
Cap's Off to You
Celebrating your way of using story

Featuring:  Charlotte Starks

Mother, Grandmother, & Storyteller a.k.a. Mama Charlotte​ from UT

Charlotte Starks
Charlotte Starks is about peace and love.  You know you are in the same room as her when you feel that warmth and acceptance.  She is a storyteller who grabs the attention of everyone and holds it beyond the telling of the tale.  I had the privilege of hearing her tell during one of the Story Crossroads Board meetings, as we have a tradition of a story being told at the end.  She is the President of the Nubian Storytellers of Utah Leadership (NSOUL) and is a mover and a shaker throughout the community.

So enjoy the past, present, and future influences of storytelling in Charlotte's life.
Story Video of the Month
Tandem stories are already special though this story video is also told in Spanish with English subtitles.  Every language is beautiful and all can enjoy this piece entitled "La bola de cristall" or "The Crystal Ball" told by Susana Tornero and Ignasi Potrony.  We learned about this piece through the collection of story videos on Tim Ereneta's site Story Lab X found here:

If you or someone you know has a story video that you want us to see, then let us know about it and email us a link to it.  Who knows?  Perhaps we will be inspired to invite you to one of our Story Crossroads event?   Remember that our 2nd Annual Festival is April 20-21, 2017 at the Viridian Event Center (8030 S. 1825 W., West Jordan, UT). 
Story of the Month

The Magic Fish Hook
The Gardener's Wife, from Colombia
A guard overheard three sisters. One wanted to marry a baker, one wanted to marry a steward, and one wanted to marry the king. All three wishes came to pass. Two sisters were jealous. For the queen’s first child, the sisters acted as midwives and replaced the child with a dog. The queen’s son was sent down the river. A gardener and his wife discovered and raised him. For the queen’s second child, the sisters replaced the child with a cat. This son was sent down the river. A gardener and his wife discovered and raised him. For the queen’s third child, the sisters replaced the child with a stick. The daughter was sent down river. Once again, the gardener and his wife took in the child. Time passed and the queen, depressed from losing three children, roamed the kingdom. She saw a garden. She told the gardeners that three things were missing from the garden: a speaking bird, a dancing tree, and living water. The boy, the queen’s lost son, left on this quest. He was warned not to listen to a voice that says “Throwaway child! Shame!” Not heeding the warning, he reacted and he turned into a crystal ball. The second boy, another of the queen’s lost sons, left on the quest and faced the same fate. The girl, the queen’s lost daughter, prepared to leave on the quest, ignored the voice, and restored her brothers. All three siblings returned the three items to the garden. The king, queen, and the queen’s two sisters traveled to the garden to see. The speaking bird revealed the crimes of the sisters. The king sentenced the sisters to death. The queen invited the gardener and his wife to live in the castle with the children.
Artwork by Joanna Huffaker
Customs and Traditions of Note in Colombia:
*  Keep your distance close when chatting and involve some level of physical contact (though not as much in Colombia than throughout South America)
*  Talk about history or culture instead of politics and religion
*  Get enough sleep so you do not yawn in public
*  Be polite by not pointing two fingers in the "V for Victory" sign 
*  Show flexibility for punctuality and being on time

Story Game of the Month

​​​​​​​Inspired by story "The Gardener's Wife"
Geared for Ages 5+

​​​​​​​The sisters switched the babies for strange things like a dog, cat, and a stick. Now play a story game that uses the idea of switching. This can be played with two or more people. The first person starts a story with a couple lines. Then another person can call at any time, “Switched!” When called, the storyteller pauses and switches out a noun or verb in the story. For example, “Once there was a boy who had a pet dog….” “Switched!” “…had a pet elephant and could never get it to fit in the house.” The next person continues the story. For a verb example, “Once there was a girl who skipped…”  “Switched!” “…danced until her feet hurt.”
Most pictures are taken by Steve Evans, our official photographer.  He is a photojournalist that travels the world.  He generously granted Story Crossroads permission to use his pictures.  You can find all of his images here:
Utah Storytelling Guild
Until we tell again,

Story Crossroads

(801) 870-5799

PO Box 274
West Jordan, UT  84084