The stories. The legends. The unexplained. All of these are a part of our heritage and Appalachian history. On August 24-26, the stories will once again swirl like the mists and fog around the Pine Mountain range and through Appalachia as the Breaks Interstate Park hosts “Tales of the Cumberlands: A Storytelling Event” convention.
The fourth gathering of storytelling event will focus on tales from the Virginia-Kentucky border region and from the Appalachian region, from early settlement days of the region to frontier to the early to mid 20th century with plenty of legend and music sprinkled in for good measure.
The event is open to the public, and admission is free. A donation of $25 per couple or $15 per individual is suggested for the Dickenson County, Va., Food Bank.
The storytelling convention features genealogists, historians, actors, novelists and other narrators who bring multiple perspectives of mountain history and traditions. The three-day program is a mix of family lore, scholarly research and artistic performances.
This year, Jim Glanville, Sharyn McCrumb, Oakley D. Baldwin, Chief Lee Vest, Luke Bauserman, Sarah Beth Hopton, James Baldwin, Lorraine Dechter, Sarah Bates, Pierceton Hobbs and Jack Wright will be among those presenting stories, experiences, gathered information, music and group topic discussions about Appalachia at the fourth year of the event.
A post-convention tour of the street area in and around the Clintwood/Dickenson County Courthouse area has been added to this year’s program to discuss more about Oakley Dean Baldwin’s book, “Carnage in Clintwood” and the August 6, 1926 shootout between a whisky drinking sheriff and a Prohibition inspector on the street in front of the Dickenson County Courthouse.
Additions to the schedule will be announced as they are secured prior to the event and made available online at the group’s Facebook page (http://bit.do/talesofthecumberlands).
The Breaks Interstate Park is located between Haysi, Va., and Elkhorn City, Ky., and is within driving distance of Pikeville, Ky., and McDowell County, W.Va. The event runs from 4pm on Thursday,August 23, through 6pm on Saturday, August 25. The Clintwood area tour is planned for Sunday, August 26, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Pre-registration for the storytelling convention is not required but attendees seeking reservations at Breaks Interstate Park may call The Breaks reservation desk directly at (276) 865-4413 for a 10% discount on lodge rooms, cabins or camping.
“The older folks who can tell the stories are dying off,” according to Stephen Conley. “Their children and grandchildren realize this and are interested in family lore. With this precious resource disappearing, it’s so important to get the oral history down.”
Last year’s storytelling convention,raised nearly $2,000 for the Wise County Food Bank.
For more information, contact Dr. Stephen Conley at DevilJohnDays@Yahoo.com or (804) 687-4447. Contributions to support the “Tales of the Cumberlands” event may be sent to Conley at 2207 Buckingham Ave., Henrico, VA 23228.
Within the next week, we hope to have an updated line-up of presenters for this year's Tales of the Cumberlands at the Breaks Interstate Park for August 24-26th.
We've been working behind the scenes to secure more speakers and musicians for this year's event. Unfortunately, due to circumstances, Steve Gilly, will not be able to make this year's event as previously announced. We hope to be able to list our group and new additions, very soon.
Stay tuned for more news as it becomes available!
We've added a page to the website with four confirmed speakers at this year's "Tales of the Cumberlands" event at the Breaks Interstate Park. We'll be posting their biographical information as soon as it is received.
Oakley Dean Baldwin will be back for another go of it this year and will be sharing more about "Carnage in Clintwood" which coincidentally, will be featured in a Sunday outing for festival goers. More on that a little later.
Luke Bauserman, who wowed the crowd with his informative and mysterious presentation last fall, returns for another year with more Appalachian oddities and mysteries.
Award winning Southern writer Sharyn McCrumb, best known for her Appalachian "Ballad" novels, McCrumb has won numerous writing awards and served as a "Writer in Residence" at Emory and Henry College and King University.
There's room for more presenters this year! We'll be adding more speakers in the coming weeks and showcase their biographies for all to see.
Can you feel the excitement building? August 24th will be here before you know it!
Make plans now to attend this event!
Welcome to our news page regarding events and happenings about this year's "Tales of the Cumberlands: A Story-Telling Event".
Here you will find posts about the schedule of events and other news surrounding our special cultural tourism event to be held at the Breaks Interstate Park, August 24-26, 2018.
Currently, the planning committee is putting together ideas, suggestions, and more in order to better inform event goers and the presenters. The "Tales of the Cumberlands" event is an opportunity to learn more about our region's unique stories, legends and people that made Appalachia.
We hope you will follow our progress and updates here on our webpage and on Facebook.