Storytelling Guild to hold February events

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FARMINGTON — The Western Maine Storytelling Guild will meet from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 16, at the University of Maine at Farmington, Olsen Student Center, in conference room 123. The guild, which meets the third Thursday of each month, is free and open to the public.

Telling a story is not required; both tellers and listeners are invited to participate. Parking is available in the student center’s High Street parking lot. Enter the building through the back entrance (opposite Roberts Learning Center), go up the stairs and room 123 is to the right.

A Storytelling Dinner will be held at Calzolaio Pasta Company, 284 Main St., Wilton, on Friday, Feb. 17, beginning at 6:30 p.m., hosted by local storyteller Phyllis Blackstone. The featured storyteller for the evening’s entertainment will be Mike Harris, a Portland area humorist who has been telling his original stories for more than a decade to anyone who will listen.

Cost of the dinner is $19.95, which includes a garden salad, Italian entree, crusty Italian bread with oil and spices, a non-alcoholic beverage, Maine state tax and gratuity. To make a reservation, call 645-9500, or go online at calzolaiopasta.com. Music during the evening will be courtesy of the keyboard stylings of Jackie Ranco. A raffle will be held to raise money for the storytelling festival that will be held in July. Future storytelling dinners are scheduled for March 23, featuring George Radcliffe, and April 20, with Deborah Freedman as the featured teller.

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The second annual Western Maine Storytelling Festival will be held in Farmington on July 20 and 21. The featured storytellers will be internationally-recognized Judith Black of Marblehead, Mass., and “Masked Marvel” Michael Cooper of Chesterville, both of whom will perform and give workshops. The festival will also showcase some half dozen skilled storytellers from northern New England. Details will be updated on the festival’s website www.wmsfestival.org as they become available.

For more information about any of these storytelling events, call either Phyllis Blackstone at 860-6622 or Myrna Vallette at 778-4387, or email info@wmsfestival.org.

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