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Storyteller to celebrate July 4th in Jonesborough

Tim Lowry will share tales from the South next week.


Acclaimed performer Tim Lowry, whose storytelling roots are deep in his home state of Kentucky and his adopted home of South Carolina, will soon perform as part of the International Storytelling Center’s Teller-in-Residence series.

Part of Storytelling Live!, the series invites a new resident to Jonesborough each week through the end of October for daily concerts and local storytelling activities.

To help celebrate July 4, Lowry, long a true connoisseur of Americana — his website says he’s “telling stories of the people, by the people and for the people” — will include a selection of his most popular frontier stories and historical pieces throughout the week.

“I always loved the performing arts, and storytelling was something that was indigenous to the area,” he said. “Storytelling was a part of everyday life, a readily accessible form of entertainment.”

Lowry’s inventive stories come from a long tradition of small-town folks who made their own fun. “When I was a teenager, my town finally got a bowling alley,” he said. “Before that it was a two-and-a-half hour drive to bowl. It was a two-hour drive to go to McDonald’s. There was one movie theater, where (to quote my mother) the movies weren’t dirty, but the floors sure were. People made their own entertainment.”

During Lowry’s weeklong residency, Tuesday through Saturday, July 3 – 7, his daily concerts will begin at 2 p.m. in the Mary B. Martin Storytelling Hall.

He will also host a special morning concert aimed at children ages 6 through 10 on Saturday, July 7, at 10:30 a.m. Tickets are just $5 for all ages. All ticket holders will receive coupons for 15 percent off at The Lollipop Shop, a popular Main Street store that sells old-fashioned sweets and toys.

Tickets for Lowry’s matinees are just $12 for adults, and $11 for seniors, students, and anyone under 18. Advance purchase is recommended for all performances.

Storytelling Live! runs from May through the end of October, with daily matinees Tuesday through Saturday and special programming like evening concerts and workshops scheduled throughout the season.

Information about all performers, as well as a detailed schedule for 2018, is available at The premier sponsor of Storytelling Live! is Ballad Health. Additional program funding comes from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Tennessee Arts Commission, the Niswonger Foundation, Eastman Credit Union, and Food City. Media sponsors include News 5-WCYB, FOX Tri-Cities, Tri-Cities CW, Johnson City Press, Kingsport Times-News, Herald & Tribune, and Cumulus Media.

The International Storytelling Center is open 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday. For more information about Storytelling Live! or to make a group reservation, call (800) 952-8392 ext. 222 or (423) 913-1276.