Thursday, April 3, 2014

International friendships bearing fruit: Tasmania will have a Wassailing Festival 9 July 2014

(pic: Christine and Martin helping to net the apple tree in Jackie Kerin's back yard Feb 2014)

Martin Jefferd is a UK storyteller based in Bristol. With family in Victoria, Martin and Christine have become regular summer visitors. Martin sought out the Vic tellers several years ago and has attended our AGMs and story swaps.

Martin comes from apple country. The first story he shared with us referenced a Wassailing celebration, where the orchards are honoured and cider is poured into the earth to awake the cider apple trees and to scare away evil spirits ensuring a good harvest of fruit in the Autumn. This festival is still popular in the West Country, England.

It’s a long story but in a nutshell, Martin also has connections to Willie Smith’s Organic Cider Brewery in the Huon Valley in Tasmania and it’s the crew at Willie Smiths, who are planning to put the spotlight on the Huon Valley through a celebration focused on the humble apple.

The festival will be based at the Apple Shed and surrounding properties.

There will be a Winter feast featuring local produce, storytelling​​​​​, folk music​, bonfire​​​​s, Morris dancing, a Wassailing celebration and culminates with the Jack in the Green (a human tree) falling over at the end of the night.

The Tassie Tellers have been learning apple stories and Martin and several Vic tellers have contributed to the collection. If you know a good one – send it to the Tasmanians!

Dark MOFO finishes on July 5 and the inaugural Huon Valley event, on Saturday, July 19, will be the Huon Encore to Dark MOFO.

Willie Smiths Organic Cider HERE
Storytelling Australia Tasmania HERE

For more details please contact Sam Reid 

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