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Storytelling festival to fill Big South Fork area with stories and fun on Saturday

The Haunting in the Hills Storytelling Festival will bring together thousands of students in East Tennessee schools to hear from renowned storytellers.

Great Smoky Mountains Natl. Park — Behind all the rustic cabins, the delicious dishes and the colorful quilts there is something deeper at the core of Appalachian culture — stories.

On the third Saturday in September each year, the National Park Service hosts a festival to celebrate the art of storytelling. It's the Haunting in the Hills Storytelling Festival, and Saturday will mark the event's 30th year. It is hosted in the Bandy Creek Visitor Center in the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area.

Participants of the festival will hear from world-renowned storytellers. Each year, thousands of students from across the area hear from them as part of the festival's outreach program. Local schools had the chance to hear from them during the week leading up to the event.

Those storytellers include Pam Faro, Sheila Arnold, Laconia Therrio, and Ingrid Nixon.

There will also be music, crafts and more. Craft classes and concerts are free and open to the public, according to the National Park Service. It will last from 10 a.m. through 10 p.m. and it is free to the public. Participants can arrive at 151 Stable Road in Oneida for the event.

People should bring a chair and plan to stay for a while, listening to captivating ghost stories and tales of the hills.

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