PULLMAN — StoryCorps, a national initiative to document the voices of Americans, will be in Wenatchee from June 4 through June 27 to collect conversations between residents of North Central Washington. The project is sponsored by Sleeping Lady Mountain Resort and KOHO Radio.
The StoryCorps mobile StoryBooth — an Airstream trailer outfitted with a recording studio — will be parked in front of the Performing Arts Center of Wenatchee at 123 North Wenatchee Avenue.
At the MobileBooth, interviews are conducted between two people who know and care about each other – often family members or friends. A trained facilitator guides the participants through the interview process and handles the technical aspects of the recording. At the end of a 40-minute session, the participants walk away with a CD of their interview. With their permission, a second copy becomes part of an archive at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. Interviews may also be broadcast on KOHO Radio FM 101.1 or on Northwest Public Radio. Northwest Public Radio, a regional public broadcasting service, broadcasts at 90.7 FM and 90.3 FM in the Wenatchee Valley. Reservations may be made on the national StoryCorps Web site, www.storycorps.net, beginning May 21, with more slots available on June 4.
“Wenatchee has such a rich cultural heritage – we know there are lots of stories to tell,” said Station Manager, Roger Johnson. “From local Native Americans to farming families to the Hispanic community, our goal is to hear from the many cultures who contribute to this unique region. We’re grateful that Sleeping Lady Mountain Resort and KOHO Radio share our excitement about this landmark project.”
The recording experience is a great opportunity for friends and family to bond, according to Program Manager, Kerry Swanson. “We’ve all had the experience of listening to a loved one and wishing that we could record the conversation for posterity. StoryCorps enables us to share important life experiences with each other and future generations.”
StoryCorps was created by award-winning documentary producer and MacArthur “Genius” Grant recipient Dave Isay. This unprecedented project has traveled to every corner of America, instructing and inspiring individuals to record their stories in sound. StoryCorps is the largest multi-year oral history project ever undertaken. Since its launch in October 2003, the StoryCorps initiative has collected interviews in 78 towns in 46 states — over 18,000 stories in all.
“As StoryCorps has traveled across the country, visiting 78 towns in 46 states, we’ve seen the profound effect it has had not only on the lives of those who have participated in the project, but also on the millions who have heard them each week on NPR,” said Isay. “We are so proud to continue our mission to teach people to become better listeners, foster intergenerational communication among families and communities, and help Americans appreciate the strength in the stories of everyday people they find all around them.”
StoryCorps currently operates a freestanding soundproof recording booth at Foley Square in New York’s Lower Manhattan. In 2006, StoryCorps launched an initiative to reach out to people affected by memory loss. StoryCorps Griot is an ongoing initiative to ensure that the voices, experiences and life stories of African Americans will be preserved and presented with dignity. All interviews recorded as part of the Griot Initiative will be archived at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History & Culture in addition to the Library of Congress.
Major funding is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. StoryCorps also relies on the support from its participants and listeners.
Individuals can visit www.StoryCorps.net to make interview reservations, listen to stories, and learn how they can support StoryCorps’ mission to honor and celebrate one another’s lives through listening.
About Northwest Public Radio
Northwest Public Radio is a non-profit, listener-supported public radio service heard on 13 stations across Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Southern British Columbia, and online at www.nwpr.org. Northwest Public Radio’s mission is to inform, enrich and inspire our audience through programs and services that share ideas, encourage thought, create community and increase appreciation of the arts. Northwest Public Radio is a community service of Washington State University.
StoryCorps is an independent nonprofit project whose mission is to honor and celebrate one another’s lives through listening. Since 2003, tens of thousands of everyday people have interviewed family and friends through StoryCorps. Each conversation is recorded on a free CD to take home and share, and is archived for generations to come at the Library of Congress. Millions listen to the award-winning broadcasts on public radio and the Internet. StoryCorps is one of the largest oral history projects of its kind, creating a growing portrait of who we really are as Americans. Major funding is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). Visit www.storycorps.net for more information.