Stories at the core: A panel discussion on using storytelling to increase heritage tourism in your community


**Note: This event is not currently scheduled, but this educational training can be facilitated in your community. Contact GK Callahan for more information.**

Learn how to incorporate stories and storytelling in cultural heritage tourism projects. Explore the link between history, culture, art and economic development through Lexington community members, who will share the process used to create the Legends of Lexington audio tour and how the project has increased local tourism.

  • Join us for this 90-minute panel discussion to learn best practices and guidelines for developing and producing audio cultural heritage tourism projects.
  • Learn how to cultivate historical stories and place-based narratives from your community or neighborhood for heritage tourism initiatives.

Topics to be covered

  • How to organize and plan for a heritage tourism initiative in your community with stories at the core.
  • How to place stories at the core of heritage tourism initiatives.
  • The guidelines for gathering and recording local stories.
  • How to turn history into a good story.
  • What makes a good story?
  • How to keep the history true.
  • How to take a story and develop it into a heritage tourism product.
  • The key ingredients for making a heritage tourism project a success.

Who should attend?

  • People who deal specifically with economic development, tourism, culture, history or the arts.
  • People involved in community decision making, such as tourism directors, city managers, chamber of commerce directors, librarians, theater directors, parks and recreation directors, or cultural affair directors, and educators and teachers who are interested in bringing history to life through stories in their classroom.
  • Artisans, craftspeople, historians, architects, community activity coordinators and agribusiness entrepreneurs.


  • Audiences will learn how narrative-based heritage tourism products can address challenges unique to rural communities, small towns and some urban neighborhoods, including: relative geographic isolation, infrastructure limitations, inability to tap into community potential and population flight.
  • Audiences will learn how arts, culture and the humanities can help address these issues and others by diversifying economies, creating sustainable small businesses, improving quality of life, and attracting visitors and investment.

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