TELLIN’ TALES: 2020 Pike Piddlers storytellers named

Published 8:33 pm Tuesday, January 7, 2020

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If 2020 is an indication of perfect vision, then the Brundidge Historical Society’s storytelling committee had perfect vision when planning for the 2020 Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival on the last weekend in January.

“We always have a great lineup of Jonesborough-seasoned storytellers for our annual Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival,” said Lawrence Bowden, BHS president. “For 2020, we are having four high-energy tellers so buckle your seatbelt because you are going on a fun and exciting ride.”

Donald Davis, the Dean of Storytelling, will be joined by Appalachian Josh Goforth, Texan Barbara McBride-Smith and West Virginian Bil Lepp. All four tellers are back for 2020 by popular demand, so it will be a perfect weekend for storytelling.

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Bowden said you don’t talk about storytelling without talking about Donald Davis. He’s better than fine wine because his stories can be absorbed and savored for a lifetime. “His facial expressions and his body language bring the stories to life. And, he has promised his Grand Canyon story this year.”

Bowden said Josh Goforth, a Grammy-nominated musician, has played everywhere from the café down the street to Carnegie Hall and the Grand Ole Opry. So, he’s right at home on stage whether he’s playing foot-stomping fiddle music or telling stories of his growing up among the tobacco fields in the mountains of Western North Carolina.

Barbara McBride-Smith is the female’s answer to Donald Davis, Bowden said. “When she steps to the microphone, she takes off and she never slows down. With that Texas twang, she reminds you of a carnival barker or a fire and brimstone preacher and I’m not even sure a preacher could hold a candle to her when she catches fire.”

There was a rumor that Bil Lepp was going to run for a high political office in West Virginia. Evidently, he decided to come to the Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival instead.

Although Lepp is a five-time champion liar, his stories often contain morsels of truth. His tales can sometimes be confusing, but are always ultra-amusing.

The 2020 Pike Piddlers Storytelling Festival will open on Friday night, January 24 with supper and stories at the We Piddle Around Theater in Brundidge. The weekend storytelling festival will continue on Saturday with three storytelling concerts at the Trojan Center Theater on the campus of Troy University.

Cathie Steed, BHS ticket chair, said the Friday night tickets are at a premium because many people order early to take advantage of the opportunity to get tickets for all four concerts. The all-weekend tickets are $50.

Saturday, January 25 storytelling concerts at the Trojan Center Theater are: 10 a.m. ($10), 2 p.m. ($15) and 6:30 p.m. ($10). All day tickets are $30. The preshow music starts 30 minutes before the storytelling. All concerts feature all four tellers with different stories.

Tickets are available by calling 334-685-5524 or 334-670-6302. Tickets are available at The Messenger in Troy.