The Evanston Public Library welcomes some of the nation’s best storytellers to Evanston for the 2nd Annual Evanston Public Library Storytelling Festival, Oct. 7- 9. The festival, to be held in multiple venues in downtown Evanston, features five headline storytellers, MOTH winners, and powerful voices from Chicago’s fast-growing storytelling scene.

The 2016 festival headline storytellers, among the most highly respected in the country, are Jim May, Megan Wells, Sadarri Saskill, Donna Washington, and Schott Whitehair. To the world of live lit, they bring diverse voices, unique styles, and depth of experience in performance. Multi-cultural folktales, bilingual stories, personal tales, “fringe” stories, ghost stories, preschool stories, an open mic, a storytelling workshop, and a panel discussion led by Northwestern’s Rives Collins will all be among the 28 festival events. All featured tellers will participate in a showcase of stories in memory of one of the country’s most
accomplished storytellers, Evanston’s own Syd Lieberman.

Audiences will also enjoy stories and Spoken Word poetry by accomplished student storytellers from Northwestern University and Evanston and other area schools. “This Much is True,” a popular Chicago storytelling show, will appear at the festival.

“Stories have long had the power to connect and inspire us. Through story, we can develop greater empathy for another point of view. We welcome the community to come together for this special event that celebrates live storytelling and the enduring power and appeal of the oral tradition,” said Karen Danczak Lyons, Director of Evanston Public Library and co-Director, with Susan Stone, of the Evanston Public Library Storytelling Festival.

“You will come to be entertained and leave perhaps more open-hearted. The talent and diversity of our storytellers, young and old, will surely delight, and there is something for everyone at Evanston’s newest festival,” said Ms. Stone.

Anyone wishing to volunteer may contact Mary Kling, Evanston Public Library Volunteer Coordinator, at

Any organizations wishing to be sponsor of the event may contact Wynn Shawver, Evanston Public Library Chief Development Officer at or 847-448-8657.