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“Delightful outing right in our backyard.”

International Storytelling Center
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: In our age of fast-moving technology, it seems unlikely that thousands of audience members could spend a weekend mesmerized by the voices of storytellers. But that's exactly what happens in Jonesborough every year, starting the first Friday in October and running through the weekend. The National Storytelling Festival began in 1973 when 60 people came to hear a few Appalachian tales from the back of a hay wagon parked beside the town courthouse. In the decades since, those 60 people have grown to 10,000, and the hay wagon has been replaced by large, circus-like tents raised throughout the town. Those first mountain tales are supplemented now with stories from around the globe, spiked with the flair of poetry, blues, ballads and banjo. The Festival encompasses a wealth of cultures, traditions and styles- a world of stories within one small, historic town.
Reviewed 21 March 2017

The city of Jonesborough is a beautiful little city full of quaint shops and also packed with history that even Tennessee residents are often not aware of. You can spend a day here enjoying the restaurants and the craft shops; in addition the annual storytelling festival will keep you entertained with raconteurs from all over the nation plying their significant talents. You won't regret this trip. As a sideline, there are some exciting rafting adventures not far away.

Thank hendersonc473
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (118)
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11 - 15 of 118 reviews

Reviewed 14 November 2016

For many years I have enjoyed journeying to Jonesborough, TN, just spend the day visiting all the wonderful shoppes and having a great meal at one of their many restaurants. I have introduced many of my family and friends to Jonesborough, and they have returned with others of their friends. In fact, we are traveling that way this coming Thursday to the Story Telling venue to hear a friend do a performance.
If you want a nice relaxed way to spend a day, or a week would even be better, plan a trip to Jonesborough, TN and be ready to enjoy yourself and learn at the same time.

Thank Diane J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
International S... C, Communications Coordinator at International Storytelling Center, responded to this reviewResponded 12 January 2017

Thanks for the great review, Diane, and for spreading the news of our great little town with your friends and family.

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Reviewed 29 October 2016

The stories were good but the amplifier was so loud it made me cover my ears much of the time. Do they assume that because many of us are older that we can't hear? I couldn't hear much for a while after that event.

Thank rs112346
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
International S... C, Communications Coordinator at International Storytelling Center, responded to this reviewResponded 12 January 2017

Thanks for taking the time to review us! We're so glad you enjoyed the stories, but sorry to hear that the volume was an issue. We will certainly take that in to account during our sound checks next year.

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Reviewed 28 October 2016 via mobile

I came with high expectations but was disappointed. The day we visited the resident story teller told her family history, not really any "stories" as I had expected.
We both almost fell asleep.
Better luck next time!

Thank Ken-Barbie-5357
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
International S... C, Communications Coordinator at International Storytelling Center, responded to this reviewResponded 12 January 2017

We're sorry to hear your experience wasn't top notch. Please accept our apologies and two tickets to give us another try during our upcoming Teller-In-Residence season. I can be reached at reached at 800-952-8392, ext. 224.

Sincerely,
Rachel Stiltner
Communications Coordinator

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Reviewed 25 October 2016

While visiting relatives we went here to see what it was like. The story teller Laura Simms was a great story teller. She kept us on the edge of our seat throughout the entire story. I didn't know what to expect but I really enjoyed it. Was a great afternoon.

1  Thank cobra487
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
International S... C, Communications Coordinator at International Storytelling Center, responded to this reviewResponded 12 January 2017

Thanks for reviewing us. Isn't Laura Simms fantastic? We hope to see you again for this year's Teller-In-Residence program or the National Storytelling Festival!

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