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StoryCorps, a national initiative to document everyday history and the unique stories of Americans, will spend a month in the North Country this summer, collecting interviews and recordings for broadcast on public radio and for the Library of Congress. The StoryCorps mobile recording booth, contained in an Airstream trailer, will be parked in Canton on the Village Green during the first two weeks of July. The booth then moves to the Flower Memorial Library in Watertown for the second half of the month.
North Country Public Radio, based in Canton, is host for the StoryCorps visit. The station will air a selection of the local stories and create special programs around the project. Selected segments will also air nationally on NPR's Morning Edition. The station is working with numerous community organizations to ensure that a broad cross section of voices and stories are included. Reservations to record a StoryCorps interview in Canton or in Watertown will open approximately two weeks before the stops in Canton and Watertown. Individuals wishing to participate will be able to reserve a spot by calling a toll-free number or by visiting a website.
At the MobileBooth, people participate in pairs - oftentimes friends or loved ones - and one interviews the other. A trained facilitator guides the participants through the interview process and handles the technical aspects of the recording. At the end of a 40-minute session, the participants walk away with a CD of their interview. With their permission, a second copy will be sent to the American Folklife Center (AFC) at the Library of Congress to become part of a high quality digital archive. This collection will eventually grow into an oral history of America. The project is sponsored by NPR (National Public Radio) and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
StoryCorps was created by award-winning NPR documentary producer Dave Isay. This unprecedented project will travel to every corner of the United States. StoryCorps is the largest oral history project ever undertaken, with plans to collect more than 250,000 interviews over the next decade. "We've seen the profound effect StoryCorps has had on the lives of those who have participated in the project, and we've seen the power that these stories have had on the millions who have heard them on NPR and on the Web," said Isay. "We believe that listening is an act of love. StoryCorps will engage communities, teach participants to become better listeners, foster intergenerational communication, and help Americans appreciate the strength in the stories of everyday people they find all around them."
More information about the project is available at www.StoryCorps.ne