Welcome to the La Crosse Storytelling Festival

   STORIES–It’s what we do!

                      20th Annual                       

Wisconsin’s first storytelling Festival

Friday, July 21th and
Saturday, July 22th, 2023
 Pump House Regional Arts Center   


Children's performance at the Festival

Fun during the children’s performances

The La Crosse Storytelling Festival was first conceived in 2003 by two local attorneys, Keith Belzer and Ted Skemp. Through their efforts and backing, the first 3 Festivals took place at Pettibone Park in La Crosse. It was in these first years that groundwork was lain for all following Festivals: the Festival would be first and foremost a family event, the level of National talent would be of the highest caliber, the Festival would highlight professional local tellers, and the event would serve as a way to educate the general public about storytelling.

In 2006, the Bluff Country Tale Spinners storytelling guild took on the major responsibility for the Festival. And, as Wisconsin’s First Storytelling Festival, it continues to meet the initial objectives. Come and enjoy the magic of storytelling!

What is happening in the 2023 Festival?

Dates: Friday, July 21 and Saturday, July 22, 2022

Location: The Pump House Regional Art Center in the Art District of downtown La Crosse. 

Pump House Regional Arts Center logo

This year’s fest has it all!



                              Stories, It’s What We Do



Photo of audience enjoying storytelling in the Festival's Main Tent.

Enjoying performances in the Main Tent

Our mission is to be the premier storytelling event in the upper Midwest, celebrating the art of storytelling by edifying, educating, and entertaining people of all ages and walks of life.

Logo for the La Crosse Storytelling Festival



Thank you for the support

WI Public Radio logo

Explore La Crosse logo

Latest News

  • Great Event and More to Come
    Our Celtic Stories and Song was a great success. The Pump House was sold out! The audience was treated to stories told by Amy Jo Vanarsdall, Steve Harden, Gwyn Calvetti, Tom Williams, and Terry Visger, music by Dublin Daughters, dancing by Clog Jam, and songs by Tom and Quinn Williams. What a night!     Continue reading →
  • Celtic Stories and Songs
    Make Saint Patrick’s Day even more fun by spending it at the Pump House with the Bluff Country Tale Spinners. Join us on Mar. 17 for stories, music by the Dublin Daughters, clogging by Clogjam, and Irish songs with Tom and Quinn Williams. An evening of CELTIC ENTERTAINMENT! Doors open at 7:00, Dublin Daughters begin Continue reading →
  • Puppet Show!
    The La Crosse Storytelling Festival is excited to announce that the Eulenspiegel Puppet Theatre of West Liberty Iowa will be performing at this year’s Storytelling Fest on July 22, 2023 at noon. They will perform Kate Shelley’s Train Rescue. Following the performance, there will be a “Make & Take” Puppet Workshop. Adult and children alike Continue reading →
  • Please Donate
    We are currently planning our 20th Anniversary! And we need your help. In order to bring you the best fest in the midwest, we are asking for donations. Please click on the button on our home page to donate to the fest. Thank you!
  • Riverfest
    Several members of the Bluff Country Tale Spinners will be sharing stories on the Family Stage this July 4th weekend at Riverfest. On Friday at 1:00 Mary Lawrence and Terry Visger will be telling and Teri Wachuta will perform at 4:00. Tom Williams and Peter Petersillie will perform on Saturday at 1:00 and 4:00. On Continue reading →
  • Volunteering
    The Festival is in need of a few volunteers. If you would like to volunteer,  please go to: https://signup.com/go/AnVNva If you have any questions, feel free to contact Megan Zirgibel @ Mcsoc200@aol.com or 608-769-1021. We love our volunteers!!