Big Fibbers Storytelling Festival

Big Fibbers Storytelling Festival Coming March 17-19
featuring Andy Offutt Irwin

The 2016 Big Fibbers Storytelling Festival featuring nationally famous Andy Offutt Irwin will be held March 17 – 19 in Rome. The three day storytelling event will offer four public performances by Irwin as well as regional and local storytellers. In addition, Irwin will perform at several schools in the area.

“We are excited to host Andy Offutt Irwin whose engaging and hilarious performances make him one of the top storytellers in the country,” says Terrell Shaw, President of Ridge & Valley Storytelling Guild. “The festival is attracting storytellers and story enthusiasts from across the state and region.” Some people have inner-kids. Andy Offutt Irwin has an outer-kid. With a manic Silly Putty voice, astonishing mouth noises, and hilarious stories, he is equal parts mischievous schoolboy, Marx brother, and Southern balladeer. A native of Covington, GA, Andy is a storyteller, humorist, singer, songwriter, musician, whistler, walking menagerie of sound effects and dialects, and so much more. Some of his talents are hard to categorize.

The festival begins on Thursday, March 17 with an opening performance by Andy Offutt Irwin. The concert line-up includes Tracy Walker, winner of the 2015 Big Fibbers Contest; Courtney Hutcherson, a fifth-grader at Armuchee Middle School who won the 2015 Debby Brown YoungTales story competition, and Terrell Shaw, president of the Ridge & Valley Storytelling Guild and two-time Big Fibber champ. Fourteen storytellers from ten cities in Georgia will compete in the 240th Big Fibbers Contest to be held Friday, March 18. Each storyteller will perform a five minute tall tale. The contest will be emceed by Andy Offutt Irwin who will entertain as the judges confer to choose the new Big Fibber Champion.

A full day of activities is planned for the last day of the festival on Saturday, March 19. Andy Offutt Irwin will facilitate a workshop for storytellers. The workshop will run from 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Berry College. Following the workshop is the Debby Brown YoungTales™ Contest at 3:00 p.m. which allows young fibbers an opportunity to share a five minute story to compete for the YoungTales title. Youth fibbers, ages 17 and under may register online to compete at Many of the contestants will meet storytellers from the seven YoungTales Storytelling Clubs at Armuchee, Berry, Elm Street, Naomi, North Heights, and West End Elementary Schools and at the Rome/Floyd County Library. These groups have been meeting during February and March to make stories from their “Trouble Lists” and share them with one another. The groups have been led by local storytellers Jane Cunningham, Mary Elena Kirk, and Terrell Shaw.

The festival will conclude Saturday evening with an Andy Offutt Irwin performance and includes the champion adult and youth storytellers who will retell their winning stories. The concert will be held at the Martha King auditorium of Trinity United Methodist Church, 8:00 p.m. on March 19.

Tickets for evening performances are $10 each or $25 for all three. Admission to the Debby Brown YoungTales™ story competition is free, but donations will be accepted at the door. Tickets to the Andy Offutt Irwin workshop are a separate charge of $25. All festival activities and concerts will be held at E.H. Young Theatre at Berry College except for the Saturday evening performance in the Martha King auditorium at Trinity United Methodist Church, 606 Turner McCall Blvd.

The event is organized by the Ridge & Valley Storytelling Guild. Sponsors include Berry College Charter School of Education, Sarah Hightower Regional Library System, the Northwest Georgia Credit Union, and Greater Rome Convention & Visitors Bureau. If your civic group or business would like help sponsor this event contact the Festival Director at

For further information contact:
Terrell Shaw, President
Ridge & Valley Storytelling Guild
For more information about Andy Offutt Irwin visit

Click the link below to view the festival’s schedule of events flyer.

Big Fibbers Festival Schedule