In the early 1970's in OKC the local libraries (in The Metropolitian Library System) were dynamic supporters of storytelling. They hosted events, trained volunteers, and went out into the community to introduce Oklahoma City to the art of oral storytelling. Many of the first storytellers who charmed audiences emerged from the ranks of librarians and staff within the system.
They were ready when a formal event to celebrate story emerged with the OKC Arts Council's "Wintertales" in 1982. "Wintertales" proved a popular event and grew to become a significant part of the year for storytellers, educators, and listeners across the mid-central regions. It developed into workshops, family concerts, and event concerts with nationally known and local storytellers. Always supported and assisted by the Territory Telllers of Oklahoma who held an "Olio" (story concert) and hosted a reception for the tellers and audience. The momentum continued even as a national event was being born in the event to be known as "Tellabration!" (R).
This "global night of storytelling" only began in the mid 1980's but by 1992 the state organization, The Territory Tellers, was going strong hosting events across the wider metropolitan area of Oklahoma City and in metro Tulsa. It was originally conceived as an event to raise awareness that storytelling was not limited to children and the programs celebrated "adult" storytelling by returning to the complex, socially relevant, and thought provoking tales that once enthralled people of every culture. Subject matter was approporate to adults with adult concerns, experiences, and dreams. In 1992, the event was held in the St. Luke's UMC. Local tellers included: Ginger La Croix, Theresa Black, Robert and Marie Harris, Barbara McBride-Smith, Patsy Packard, David Titus, Weckeah Bradley and Jared Aubrey. However, by the late 20th century the event had evolved to include "family friendly" events and "youth Tellabrations."
In 2003, Rep. Danny Morgan, then state storytelling agency president, Garland McWatters, and storyteller Bonny Smith asked Gov. Brad Henry to designste the week of storytelling (Nov. 16-22, 2003) as "Oklahoma Tellabration Storytelling Week!" Storytelling," Morgan said, " is a valuable method of sharing American folklore and is an important means of contributing to Oklahoman's knowledge of the history of our state."