Storytelling Festival Aug. 5 & 6 announces program

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FARMINGTON- The program for the first annual Western Maine Storytelling Festival, slated for August 5 and 6 in Farmington, has been set. Well known storytellers Michael Parent, Gaylon “Jeep” Wilcox and Jackson Gillman, will be featured. Other storytellers from around the Western Maine region will also showcase their stories.

Michael Parent

Program: August 5: 7:30-8:30 pm, Gaylon “Jeep” Wilcox, Rangeley Woodsman-Storyteller; 9-10 pm, Ghost Stories with Michael Parent and Jackson Gilman, at the UMF Amphitheater (in case of rain, UMF Lincoln Auditorium).

August 6: 10 am-12 pm, Storytelling Showcase, Farmington Public Library (FREE); 1:45-4:45 pm, Stories for Families by featured storytellers Michael Parent, Gaylon “Jeep” Wilcox, and Jackson Gilman, at the gazebo in Meetinghouse Park (FREE); 7-9 pm, Storytelling Concert, Lincoln Auditorium, Roberts Learning Center, UMF; 9:30-11 pm, “Tale End” reception for tellers and listeners, story swap at The Homestead Bakery on Broadway.

Michael Parent, a Franco-American Mainer, has performed as a storyteller-singer in both English and French since 1977. He received the National Storytelling Network Circle of Excellence Award in 1999 and was a keynote speaker at both the 2001 National Storytelling Conference and the 2005 Sharing the Fire Conference. He has been featured at events throughout the U.S. as well as in Canada, France, Austria, New Zealand, Ireland, England, Poland, Brazil, and Costa Rica. Parent lives in Portland, Maine. His website is

Born and raised in Rangeley, Gaylon “Jeep” Wilcox has spent most of his life in the woods of the region, working as a woodsman, river driver, and more. He has been creating stories and poems all his life, and has performed at schools, at the Maine Festival and at the folk festivals in Lowell, MA, and Seattle, WA. Wilcox has been featured in several documentaries, exhibits, and articles, including the “Working the Woods” exhibit of the Maine Arts Commission (1999).

Jackson Gillman, known as the “Stand-Up Chameleon,” magically transforms himself into a wide array of eccentric characters through his many talents as mime, actor, songsmith and storyteller. Gillman has thrice been a featured performer at the National Storytelling Festival in Tennessee, and has performed at festivals and schools throughout the country. For twenty years he hosted a summer concert series of comedy, music and New Vaudeville on Mount Desert Island. Year-round he now brings his unique brand of one-man theater to diverse audiences across the nation. See

The mission of the Western Maine Storytelling Festival is “to engage the western Maine area in storytelling and folk arts and the celebration of regional narrative arts by disseminating information and knowledge, teaching storytelling strategies, and presenting excellent performances.” The festival is made possible through grants from the Maine Humanities Council and the Maine Arts Commission, and donations from supporting businesses, organizations and individuals. For more information, go to, or email

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