West Virginia’s best storytellers competed today for prizes in the Liars Contest during the 26th annual Vandalia Gathering with the GOLDENSEAL magazine Golden Shovel award going to the best tall tale. Four-time champion Bil Lepp emceed the contest.
The winners were:
Biggest Liar (first place): Rich Knoblich, Wheeling
Bigger Liar (second place): Mark Howe, French Creek
Big Liar (third place): Nancy Feather, Aurora
Youth Award: Justin Wood, Charleston
The Liars Contest regularly draws standing room-only crowds. GOLDENSEAL, West Virginia’s magazine of traditional life, hosts the event and publishes the winning stories each year.
The lies must be short stories—humorous, dramatic, supernatural, etc.—of two to three minutes in length. Ribbons and cash prizes are awarded, along with an official Golden Shovel “trophy” for the first place winner.
The annual Vandalia Gathering is a FREE celebration of the traditional arts, music, dance, stories, crafts and foods of West Virginia. The Cultural Center and State Capitol Complex grounds plays host to this expanding family-style gathering each year on Memorial Day weekend. The unique blending of ethnic and cultural heritage combines an atmosphere as comfortable as a family reunion with the excitement of a state fair.
The statewide folk festival, named for the proposed 14th colony, creates new memories for the thousands of visitors who flock from across the Mountain State and the entire country to celebrate traditions passed from generation to generation. In addition to offering a sampling of West Virginia’s traditional mountain culture by showcasing craftspeople and performers, the Vandalia Gathering pays tribute to the state’s ethnic heritage through a variety of exhibitions and programs.
Vandalia Gathering is a program of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History. For more information call Ginny Painter at (304) 558-0220, ext. 120. Visit the Division’s web site at www.wvculture.org for more information about the programs of the Division.
The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.
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