Poplarville Storytellers to present at Blueberry Jubilee

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Poplarville’s annual Blueberry Jubilee will take place on June 8 and June 9, and will feature members of the Poplarville Storytellers who will be presenting an array of tales for event-goers.

Event Chairwoman Mary Etta Moody, said there are 12 members of the storytelling group who will present stories from across North America. Some will speak about the old west, some about the wilderness of Canada, and others about life in Poplarville, Moody said.

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In addition to the storytellers, Moody said there are between eight and 10 members of the group who participate in the audience. She said audience members are the most important, because without them the group would have no one to tell any stories to.

Native American author Ernestine Thompson will be among the storytellers, Moody said. Most of the local Native American stories have been lost over the years. However, Thompson has been able to keep track of many of those stories, and included them in novels and short story collections to prevent them from being lost. Thompson will be telling some of those local Native American stories during the Jubilee, Moody said.

One story Thompson usually tells is the story of Black Wolf Reed, a Native American man who saved his wife from a pack of wolves. As the story goes, Black Wolf Reed and his wife were traveling through a swamp on their way to visit their daughter when a pack of wolves attacked. Reed pulled his wife inside a hollow stump and used his hatchet to chop off the wolves’ feet when they tried to reach under the stump. When Reed and his wife finally came out of the stump, all of the wolves were dead, and they were able to continue on their way, Moody said.

Joe Westley is another storyteller who will be performing at the Jubilee. Moody said Westley is the “King of the Poplarville Storytellers.” He is more than 80-years-old and will share a variety of narratives, including westerns, world events and tales of people who got lost in the woods near Poplarville. Moody said Westley typically shares his narratives so he can close the night.

Dr. David St. Louis will report about cowboys and the Rocky Mountains, Moody said. She said he is the only one in the group who plays music, so he typically sings cowboy songs to go along with his allegories.

“His songs are wonderful. They add a totally different element,” Moody said.

Moody and several other members of the storytelling group will speak at the Jubilee, Moody said.

On Friday, the storytellers will be presenting on the stage located on South Julia Street near the First United Methodist Church. The event will start at 6 p.m. with a musical performance by Crossties, Moody said. The storytellers will tell tales from 7 p.m. to about 8 p.m.

On Saturday, storytellers will begin at 9 a.m. and will be located in the youth building at Poplarville’s First United Methodist Church. They will be telling stories until between noon and 1 p.m. Moody said there will be stories for all ages.

“Come sit down, get cool and listen to one of our fantastic stories from one of our fantastic storytellers,” Moody said.