Press Release:  Event Date November 9, 2015


NM Historical Society Presents “Liars and Storytellers”


Everyone loves a good yarn—whether it’s a true story or a tale that has been embellished to the point that the line between truth and fiction becomes blurred.  On Monday, November 9, the North Manchester Historical Society will present some of these stories in a program on “Liars and Storytellers.”   The fun begins at 6:40 p.m. in the Assembly Room of Timbercrest Senior Living Community, 2201 East Street. 


Gladys Airgood, a life-long resident of the Servia area, will begin by telling about the Servia Liars Contest.  The Liars Contest began as part of a community celebration organized in 1925 to choose Servia’s contestant for the state horseshoe competition.  The event developed into The Big Day, a community festival which was held yearly until 1950.  In 1946, The Big Day started with a baseball game, included adult and children’s contests, two band concerts, and culminated in the liars’ contest at 9:00 p.m.


Airgood wrote a comprehensive history of Servia, Servia, Indiana 1834-2011:  The friendly town you will always call home!”  She and many family members attended Servia School and were active in the church there.  Airgood graduated from Chester High School, and attended Indiana University and took courses at Purdue, Ivy Tech and Manchester.  She has published articles in the Wabash County History and many newsletters, and completed several genealogical histories.  She was named Volunteer of the Year by the North Manchester Historical Society in 2014.


Earl McKinley has been telling stories about small town Indiana that warm your heart and tickle your funny bone for much of his 81 years.  A native of Flora, Indiana, he first became a storyteller when he came home from school and his mother would say “Tell me a story about school today.”  He soon learned that she enjoyed the stories more when he embellished them.  On November 9, he will be telling a story of a Downs’ syndrome boy, three young teenagers and flying cow pies; he describes it as “a tender, loving story that ends on Christmas Eve.”  The story appeals to listeners of all ages, and child young and old are invited to hear it.


McKinley, or “just plain Mac” is a retired local dentist of 39 years of practice.  He is a volunteer at Lutheran Hospital where each Wednesday he tells stories and poems and does magic shows for children in the pediatric wards.


While many attend only the program, the public is also invited to come to the Assembly Room at 6 p.m. for a meal prior to the program.  For those who wish to attend the dinner, reservations must be made no later than noon on Friday, November 6.  The cost of the meal is $8.50, $3.50 for those on the Timbercrest meal plan.  Reservations may be made by calling Evelyn at 260-982-6777, Mary at 260-982-1813 or the Center for History at 260-982-0672. 


For more information call the North Manchester Historical Society at 260-982-0672.