Family Picks

Family Picks: A lovely park setting for the Wake County Storytelling Festival

CorrespondentSeptember 26, 2013 

The annual Storytelling Festival is an event for the whole family.


Do you enjoy being outside on a crisp fall day? In a scenic park? Listening to master storytellers? For free?

If you answered yes to all these questions, then head out for the Wake County Storytelling Festival on Saturday. This annual festival run by Wake County Public Libraries brings professional storytellers to the lovely Historic Oak View County Park every fall.

From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., you can drop in on storytelling sessions on three separate stages, see performances by the theater troupe Rags to Riches and hear a performance by the kids’ band Big Bang Boom.

Everything is held outdoors, where you can spread out blankets and lawn chairs.

This year’s featured storytellers are Heather Forest, an author, musician and performer from New York, and The Healing Force, a family of performers from Winston-Salem. Forest, a professional storyteller for 30 years, uses original music, folk guitar, poetry and prose to weave folktales for her audiences.

The Healing Force is known for its high-energy performances that combine music, dance and stories to illuminate traditional African culture. Expect drums, rattling gourds, costumes and dancing at their shows.

In addition to the performances, there will be a hayride, face painting and games for children. If the weather is nice, you can easily spend a full day there.

For more information, visit

Folklife Festival

Saturday is also the N.C. Folklife Festival in Carrboro. There will be events all over town on Saturday celebrating North Carolina’s traditional arts, music and culture.

Carrboro Elementary School will be a good spot for families. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., there will be a maker’s fair featuring artisans, demonstrations and hands-on crafts, as well as programs about traditional gardening and food preparation.

You can see many styles of dance, from folk dancing to breakdancing, at the Century Center from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will also be live music performances going on at venues all over town.

For the full festival schedule, go

A weekend of Mule Days

For another taste of North Carolina tradition, Benson Mule Days are this weekend.

All weekend long, the rural Johnston County town of Benson will be filled with carnival rides. There will also be live music, a rodeo, a karaoke contest and nightly street dances. And don’t forget the mule races.

A highlight for many is the parade, which draws about 20,000 people. It begins at 10 a.m. Saturday on Main Street.

Go to for all the details.

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