By Troy Brooks
West Jefferson will celebrate its eighth annual “On The Same Page” Literary Festival next week, and all lovers of writing and literature are invited. The festival will run from Tuesday, Sept. 15 through Saturday, Sept. 19 and will feature events from dawn till dusk.
“On the Same Page celebrates reading and writing,” said director Jane Lonon. “It brings outstanding, nationally known authors to rural Ashe County and brings the community together through the written and spoken word.”
This year’s festival features more than two dozen events including writing workshops, literature and poetry readings, presentations and luncheons. Events will start as early as 8:30 a.m. and will go on into the evening hours. Visit http://www.onthesamepagefestival.org for a full schedule of the festival’s events and times.
“All author events are free and open to the public and do not require reservations,” said Lonon. “We’ve tried to make the event as accessible to the public as possible so they can experience the wonderful programs and interactions it has to offer.”
Some events do require registration and/or admission due to limited seating and costs. The two writing workshops, Ken Waldman’s on Thursday morning and Georgann Eubanks’ on Thursday afternoon, have a max number of participants and pre-registration is required. At this time, there are still spaces available in each workshop.
The luncheon events require registration and payment for the meals. Thursday’s “Literary Trails Luncheon” is $10 and will feature Georgann Eubanks. The Saturday culminating luncheon costs $15 and will include a panel discussion featuring six authors.
A few highlights to check out next week include:
- Book Fair- Friday, Sept. 18
The Book Fair features authors from the High Country and around the state. Authors will present their own work and new publications and attendees can talk with them about their craft. The fair is free and runs from 3:30-5:30 p.m. at the Arts Center.
- On The Same Plate Luncheon- Saturday, Sept. 19
Finish off a week of literature with a luncheon and panel featuring festival authors and publishers. Enjoy a good meal while listening to this year’s featured authors discuss the year’s theme., Telling Stories.” The panel will include Angela Davis- Gardner, Amy Greene, Edward Kelsey Moore, Ann Pancake and Wendy Welch. The Page Crafters Writing competition will also announce its winner at the West Jefferson United Methodist Church Community Room in downtown West Jefferson. The luncheon will start at noon in the West Jefferson United Methodist Church Community Room. Reservation is required at a nominal charge.
- The Wizardry of Oz: The Storytelling Genus of L. Frank Baum- Tuesday, Sept. 16, 7:30 p.m.
Come listen to a presentation from Professor Elliot Engel on the themes and foundations of L. Frank Baum’s great works, including his childhood classic, “The Wizard of Oz.” The presentation costs $12 and tickets are available in advance or at the door. The show will take place at the Ashe Arts Center.
- Telling Stories Live: An Evening of Song and Storytelling- Friday, Sept. 18, 7:30 p.m
A new event for the festival, Telling Stories live goes along with the festival’s theme “telling stories” and features authors, musicians and storytellers celebrating this year’s theme through stories, poetry and music. Performers include musicians Jack Beck and Michael Bell, storytellers Naomi Faw and Judy Morris, and Alaska’ Fiddlin Poet, Ken Waldman. Event is free to the public. Event starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Ashe County Arts Council. Refreshments will be provided.
“The Festival is a fantastic time for both authors and readers,” said Lonon. “People come here for great interactions with authors and our audiences. It’s a wonderful time for authors and readers to get together and share their perspectives of the themes of the literary world. We look forward to seeing everyone next week.”
For more information about the OTSP, visit the festival website at onthesamepagefestival.org or call 336-846-2782