Once Upon A Nation storytellers return to Philly's historic district

John McDevitt
May 24, 2019 - 4:00 am
Once Upon A Nation storytellers during their final rehearsals.

Courtesy of Historic Philadelphia

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The true stories of those who help form the nation are being told at wooden benches located throughout historic Philadelphia as Once Upon A Nation kicks off its summer season Saturday.

Once Upon A Nation storytellers make a return, talking about those who made history in the very place history was made.

"I think of these storytelling benches sort of as the calling cards to the museums or attractions that they are in front of. So you want to hear something about the Arch Street Meeting House, you learn about it at the storytelling bench and then you can go inside this incredible building and learn even more," said Amy Needle with Historic Philadelphia, the organization that oversees the program.

There are 13 storytelling benches located at various spots in the historic district.

"Hamilton, Betsy Ross, Ben Franklin, we have them all. But the wonderful thing about the Once Upon A Nation stories is we also tell the stories about the little known people that made the difference, the women, the children, the African-Americans both freed and enslaved," Needle added. 

Once visitors hear a story they get a star to put on a flag. When they get all 13, they get a free ride on the carousel in Franklin Square. 

Three additional benches are located in Valley Forge National Historical Park.