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National Storytelling Festival

Festival Event

Festival tents at dusk. – Jay Huron

Ages Festival is Appropriate For

9 and up

Hailed "...the leading event of its kind" by USA Today, the National Storytelling Festival is the largest and oldest storytelling festival in the U.S. and the event that sparked the modern-day revival of storytelling in America. The festival began in 1973 when 60 people came to hear a few tales from the back of a hay wagon pulled up beside the town courthouse. In the decades since, those 60 people have grown to 9,000, and the hay wagon replaced by large circus-like tents sprinkled throughout the town of Jonesborough. Peppered with the flare and fun of blues, poetry, ballads, banjo, and more, the National Storytelling Festival encompasses a wealth of cultures, geography, and styles--a world of stories within one small, historic town. Learn more from our website:

How to Get There

During the Festival, large, circus-type tents are erected in downtown Jonesborough with seating in each tent. When you pick up your passes at Registration, you will receive a Program of Events which will include the event schedule with map indicating the location for the full three day programming.

The International Storytelling Center is located across the street from the Courthouse at 100 W. Main Street in downtown Jonesborough, Tennessee.

Pet Friendly Notes

Only Service dogs as defined by the ADA are allowed at the Festival.


$10 - $170