Footsteps echoed across the concrete sidewalk. Hundreds of creatures gathered for this nighttime annual event.
Eeerie music floated through the fogginess. Picnic baskets were scattered amongst the blades of grass…
All of this is true. But it was only a gathering of folks for the 18th Annual Ghosts in the Garden storytelling event at Leu Gardens this past Friday evening.
Lead storyteller Mitchell O’Rear of Project Imagination welcomed the audience that was scattered on the lawn of the main Leu Gardens building. The sun was setting quickly over the lake. You could spy the towers of Florida Hospital in the sun’s waning light. A chill wrapped its arms around each one of us as we listened to stories scary and humorous for an hour and a half.
There were seven storytellers in all. Scattered across the lawn, listeners were sitting on blankets and fold-up camp chairs dining from picnic baskets or dining on food from a vendor tent. As I sat in my camp chair almost shivering, I wondered if it was the chilly Florida air or the fine storytelling that made this evening memorable.
“An’ the Gobble-uns ‘at gits you
(“LITTLE ORPHANT ANNIE” by James Whitcomb Riley)
This post was written by Guest Blogger Extraordinaire Stephen D. Nelson. Stephen is the Musical Director at Park Maitland School and has worked with the Orlando Repertory Theater since its days as the Civic Theatre of Central Florida, spending 13 years as music director. He recently spent his 25th summer teaching creative dramatics there. In 2003, Stephen was honored with the Distinguished Theatre Career Award, for his work with youth theatre.