CanDo! hosted its first-ever summer storytellers event on Wednesday, June 28th at Windwalker Underground Gallery. Modeled after other local, statewide, or nationally recognized storyteller programs, this event showcased local storytellers as they shared their experiences or stories about pieces of local history and events.
There were six storytellers lined up for the evening: Don Colizzi, Julie Kimmer, Latrell Levanduski, Nataliya Malaydakh, Ben Phlegar, and Lansing Poet Laureate Dennis Hinrichsen. Don Colizzi is longstanding community member with great knowledge of the military and our local veterans, and Julie Kimmer runs the Courthouse Square Museum and has vast understanding of local history. Latrell Levanduski is a 2014 Charlotte High School graduate and a member of the 2017 Western Michigan University Cotton Bowl team, while Nataliya Malaydakh is an Olivet College student who has led a very interesting life and has enthralling stories to share. Ben Phlegar is a retired social studies teacher from Charlotte High School, and he is famous among his students for his engaging lectures on history, pop culture, and his own life experiences. Finally, Dennis Hinrichsen is the Poet Laureate for Lansing, has written extensively, and has vast knowledge of poetry and his craft. Each storyteller will have 10-15 minutes to share his or her story.
“We were very excited about this standing-room-only event,” said Bill Barnes, 2017 CanDo! chair. “It provided an opportunity for local storytellers to share their stories, was in line with the resurgence we are seeing in arts and culture our community, and connected with the enthusiasm around all of the great things happening in Charlotte.”
The videos that follow are the presentations by 1) Don Colizzi, 2) Dennis Hinrichsen, 3) Latrell Levanduski, 4) Julie Kimmer, 5) Ben Phlegar and 6) Nataliya Malaydakh.