Campfire Tales

Everyone gather around the campfire, and let Bays Mountain Park tell you a tale. This September, visit the Bays Mountain Amphitheater for “Campfire Tales,” a free storytelling event sponsored by Knoxville TVA Credit Union.

Each Friday night of the month, BMP welcomes tellers from Jonesborough Storyteller’s Guild, who belong to one of the oldest continuing groups of storytellers in the nation. You’ll hear two exciting stories each night, with a different lineup of tellers every Friday.

“’Campfire Tales’ is one of the most exciting events in our 50th Anniversary lineup,” said Bays Mountain Park Manager Rob Cole. “We hope families and folks of all ages will come up to enjoy a great night at the park.”

For more than 50 years, and even well beyond that by those early settlers and families who lived here, Bays Mountain’s history has been filled with storytellers spinning yarns about topics related from mountain living in the olden days or, more recently, tales about animals found throughout our region or even the wonders found in the night skies above us.

Today, as educational interpreters, BMP park naturalists and astronomy staff have developed wonderful storytelling skills to the benefit of thousands of students and visitors who come to the park seeking to grow their knowledge in any of those areas.

“We have a rich tradition of storytelling on Bays Mountain,” Cole said. “So it seems very fitting to have Jonesborough’s Storytellers at the park for some good, ol’ fashioned, creative fun as told by those who do it best.”

“Campfire Tales” begins at 7 p.m. on September 3, 10, 17 and 24. This program is free with park entry, and each night will last about an hour and a half. The first 50 kids will receive swag bags, and Knoxville TVA Credit Union will give out lanterns while supplies last.

The amphitheater is bench seating, and you are welcome to bring stadium chairs for your comfort. Bag/lawn chairs and outside food/drink are not allowed.

The Jonesborough Storyteller’s Guild have told stories live every Tuesday night in Jonesborough for over 25 years. After a year on Zoom, they are now back to live performances. You can find information on their shows on their website at or by calling 423-730-8977. Tellers are available for private shows and events.