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CONTACT: WINSTON BARCLAY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0073; fax (319) 384-0024
e-mail:winston-barclay@uiowa.edu

Release: May 19, 1999

UI artist Thunder-McGuire will bike for '1,000 Miles of Iowa Stories’ June 11-22

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa sculptor and storyteller Steve Thunder-McGuire will mount his bicycle this summer to share and collect "1,000 Miles of Iowa Stories," June 11-22.

Thunder-McGuire, a UI art education faculty member, will work during his two-week bike tour with Care Initiatives of Iowa senior centers in Ottumwa, Corydon, Corning, Avoca, Dunlap, Sioux City, Fonda, Eldora, Waterloo, Dubuque, Cedar Rapids and Iowa City.

During afternoon storytelling sessions at Care Initiative Centers, he will tell some stories that have an Iowa flavor and collect recordings of Iowa elders’ stories. In the evening he will tell and collect Iowa stories at public libraries. The Iowa stories will be anthologized in a CD, "1,000 Miles of Iowa Stories," which is slated for a spring 2000 release.

Thunder-McGuire is a contemporary traditional storyteller, and he teaches "What is Storytelling For?" with UI social work scholar Tom Walz. He is also director of BIKEFORALL, a bicycle adventure program for students with developmental and physical disabilities.

His most recent work is "Completing Stories," an audio CD of stories within stories, in which his painting a picture of his Demon Hot Wheel, at the age of 12, leads to riding his bicycle on the Idita-Rod Trail in the Alaskan bush in the dead of winter at the age of 37, to remembering snot on the end of his lip, to riding up a flaming ramp, to pulling a drowning man out of the Iowa River in 1993. to answering his dad's question, "What were you thinking?" Thunder-McGuire has told stories across the United States, in Mexico and most recently in Montreal, Canada.

He has published widely on art education and storytelling. Steve has also lectured on the use of storytelling and performed at universities in Canada and the United States. Thunder-McGuire received a 1997 Collegiate Teaching Award from the UI Council on Teaching.

In 1997 he rode his bicycle back to Iowa City (3,478 miles) from Fairbanks, Ala. to raise money for Close Encounters Art Workshop, a two-week summer residency program for high school students with physical disabilities. The ride raised nearly $15,000. During the trip he maintained daily correspondence with students in Iowa City and Cedar Rapids via a web page.

In 1995 Thunder-McGuire completed what is billed as the "World's Toughest Human Powered Ultra-Marathon," the Iditasport -- a start-to-finish bicycle race on the Iditarod Trail in Alaska in the dead of winter. He plans to enter the 2000 Iditasport, which will be yet another story. This adventure will be done in support of BIKEFORALL.

For the "1,000 Miles of Iowa Stories" project, Thunder-McGuire is working with Walz, whose expertise is in the field of gerontology. Walz, who recently retired as director of the UI School of Social Work, began the Peace Corps Program in Honduras three decades ago and is recognized around the world through international social work projects he has initiated. The director of the International Bill Foundation, Walz recently published "An Unlikely Celebrity," based on the life of Bill Sackter, the subject of the movie, "Bill."

Thunder-McGuire and Walz are using their partnership with Care Initiatives of Iowa to launch BIKEFORALL. Care Initiatives of Iowa is purchasing for BIKEFORAL two dual recumbent bicycles. The dual recumbents allow riders to be able to be teamed up, side by side, so that a variety of special needs can be provided for disabled cyclists.

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1,000 Miles of Iowa Stories

June 11: Kalona to Ottumwa (72 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Ottumwa
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Ottumwa public library

June 12: Ottumwa to Corydon (65 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Corydon
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Corydon public library

June 13: Corydon to Corning (84 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Corning
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Corning public library

June 14: Corning to Avoca (64 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Avoca
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Avoca public library

June 15: Avoca to Dunlap (37 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Dunlap
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Dunlap public library

June 16: Dunlap to Sioux City (69 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Sioux City
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Sioux City public library

June 17: Sioux City to Fonda (95 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Fonda
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Fonda public library

June 18: Fonda to Eldora (120 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Eldora
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Eldora public library

June 19: Eldora to Waterloo (45 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Waterloo
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Waterloo public library

June 20: Waterloo to Dubuque (100 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Dubuque
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Dubuque public library

June 21: Dubuque to Cedar Rapids (65 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Cedar Rapids
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Cedar Rapids public library

June 22: Cedar Rapids to Iowa City (30 miles)
3:30 p.m. -- Care Initiatives of Iowa senior center in Iowa City
6:30 p.m. -- open storytelling, Iowa City public library