This week will mark my 12th annual offering of the Summer Storytelling Retreat & Adventure here in Asheville, NC. In this weeklong workshop, those drawn to stories are invited to ‘dip their toes’ into storytelling and experienced tellers are called to re-emerge themselves in storytelling to uncover new ways to tell old stories.
One of my favorite traditions in the earlier years of the Summer Storytelling Retreat & Adventure was the trip out to the Hicks’ Homeplace up on Beech Mountain, NC. We would all hop in a van and take the mountain roads up to hear Rosa, and her sons, Ted and Lenard sing ballads and tell stories from their front porch, introducing the workshop participants to the mischievous mountain legends of ‘Jack’.
In the past several years, I have still headed up the mountain just shortly after the retreat ends (instead of during the scheduled agenda). And workshop participants are also invited to join in for this outing. At the homeplace, we help to commemorate and celebrate the lives and legacies of Ray, Rosa and Ted. It is always striking for new visitors how this trip to Beech Mountain acts almost like a leap back in time because the house is still preserved very much as it was when Ray and Rosa lived there – although with the addition of some basic modern ‘conveniences’ like electricity and indoor plumbing which were added in 2003.
I hope you enjoy these photos of my Summer Storytelling Retreat & Adventure in its early years. I am amazed at how my life has been touched by so many of these participants over the years as our paths intertwine and cross in unexpected and exciting ways. Take a close look and you might even find some familiar faces!