Day of storytelling, music and more planned at Bloomfield Cultural Center June 25

Mike Easterling
Farmington Daily Times

FARMINGTON — A full day of storytelling, live music, fitness and comedy presented from a variety of perspectives will be offered at the Bloomfield Cultural Center this weekend.

The Bloomfield Day of Stories will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, June 25 at the Bloomfield Public Library and Bloomfield Cultural Center, 333 S. 1st St. The free event is presented by the library and funded by a $10,000 grant with money from the 2021 American Rescue Plan Act and administered through the American Library Association.

Corey Bard, the director of the library and the cultural center, said the lineup includes a variety of Native, Latino and New Mexico performers, while Flo Trujillo, the former longtime children's librarian at the Farming Public Library who organized that institution's now-defunct storytelling festival, will serve as the emcee.

Lyla June

"It'll be a really good day," Bard said. "We've got all sorts of giveaways, and it's a family-oriented event."

Trujillo will lead things off with an introduction at 10:30 a.m., then bilingual entertainer Sarah Malone will present funny tales for kids at 11 a.m.

Shiprock resident Diego Mathieu, the youngest performer at the event, will deliver a short presentation on "One 11-Year-Old to Another" at noon, then Ashley Prelo, a resource faculty member for Eastern New Mexico University-Ruidoso, will lead a yoga and stretching class.

Ashley Prelo

At 1 p.m., Eldrena Douma, a member of the Laguna, Tewa and Hopi nations, will present stories about her pueblo ancestors, while Lyla June, a Dine singer and motivational speaker, will take the stage at 2 p.m. At 3 p.m., New Mexico Jay McKittrick takes over with this Southwest brand of observational comedy, while southern-style storyteller Elizabeth Ellis will be featured at 4 p.m.

The day's activities will conclude with Latin jazz music by Organo Ambiente from 5 to 7 p.m., a group that includes Allan Rodriguez and Pat Bickers.

Sarah Malone

Bard said he has no idea how many visitors to expect for the event, but he said it has been promoted heavily throughout the county, not just in Bloomfield. He said he was encouraged by the attendance at last weekend's San Juan River Balloon Rally in Bloomfield and hopes that is a sign of things to come for the Bloomfield Day of Stories.

If the event is a success, Bard said he would like to explore the idea of making it an annual event, although the grant he received only provides enough funding for one year. Bard has said he was a big fan of the annual storytelling festival presented by the Farmington Regional Library and would like to be able to offer an event like that in San Juan County on an annual basis again.

"It's totally dependent on funding," he said. "This came up as a humanities grant, but we will pursue or look for ways to do it again. But this was a one-time opportunity, and it's not always easy to find the money to do these things."

Call 505-632-8315 for more information.

Mike Easterling can be reached at 505-564-4610 or measterling@daily-times.com.

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