Continuing a family tradition with Tellin’

Published 12:00 am Monday, October 17, 2005

The Times-Journal

Tonya Williams, a volunteer with the Tale Tellin’ festival, has a collection of multi-colored swatches from each of the events since 1997.

Every year, she pulls the collection out of storage and puts it on again as a badge of seniority with the event.

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Participating since 1990, Williams has been a volunteer for the festival for 15 years. The festival only began giving out swatches in 1997.

Because of her longevity, the 31-year-old Williams has been part of the festival almost half her life.

She started out selling T-shirts for the event.

Now she mainly works the front gate, taking up tickets and registering attendees for door prizes. But she also still works with her mother on the project coordinating efforts with brochures and marketing the festival.

She’s also become a storyteller herself.

Going from volunteer was a natural shift for her she said.

It’s also become a tradition in her family.

Her children have attended every festival for the last nine years.

They’ve even started telling their own stories.