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Scroll down to watch the storytelling performances from the 2018 show at Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington, Long Island.
Neil Kramer — “Pass the Juice”
A nickname, as Neil Kramer can attest to, can be life-changing. Growing up as a pampered only child, Neil Kramer had no official chores to do! He did chores just to rebel. Who doesn’t want THAT childhood? With a story about sleepaway camp and the accidental nickname he got there, here is Neil with “Pass the Juice.”
Neil Kramer Born in Queens, Neil rarely left the city until he moved to Los Angeles to work in the entertainment industry at such places like Disney and HBO. Fifteen years later, missing bagels, he returned to New York where he now works as a freelance writer and photographer.
Kathy Radigan — “Sex, the City, and My 70-Year-Old Mom”
Would you ever take your mom to a sex shop? Kathy Radigan did. (By accident, of course!) The sex shop is a vivid memory that is forever seared into Kathy Radigan’s brain. Another memory is the time she was 11 and got a puppy Christmas morning! But honestly, Kathy still can’t believe the day she and her Mom took a Sex in the City bus tour, which accidentally explored some unexpected pleasures of the Big Apple. Here’s Kathy to tell all in “Sex, the City, and My 70-Year-Old Mom.”
Kathy Radigan — Producer — is the writer and creator of the blog, My Dishwasher’s Possessed! She is a contributing author to three anthologies, Motherhood May Cause Drowsiness, Sunshine After the Storm: a survival guide for the grieving mother, and The HerStories Project: Women Explore the Joy, Pain and Power of Female Friendship. Kathy’s essays have been featured on HuffPost over 100 times, including her viral pieces An Open Letter to My Teenage Son About Drinking and Two Words for the Mom Who Sent Their Kid to School With No Socks Today. Her work has also been seen on, Romper, Scary Mommy, Yahoo, Aplus, and TODAY Parents, as well as many other online publications. Kathy lives on Long Island with her husband of 25 years, their three kids (two boys, 19 and 13 and a daughter, 16) and their brand-new dishwasher, which at least for now shows no signs of demonic possession.
BARBARA SOLOMAN JOSSELSOHN — “YES, HE’S MY SON… OR IS HE?”
Her son’s killer instincts on the tennis court leaves Barbara Solomon Josselsohn questioning whether she really knows him at all. As a girl, Barbara dares to admit that her favorite show was The Partridge Family. She loved that rockstar David Cassidy and thought she knew everything about him from Tiger Beat Magazine. As a grown woman, Barbara has another rock star in her life, her son, and she thought she knew everything about him too. (But obviously not about the killer instinct!) Oh, when will she learn? Here’s Barbara reading “Yes, He’s My Son… Or Is He?”
Barbara Solomon Josselsohn started her career as a reporter for a home furnishings trade magazine, where she learned everything one can know about mattresses. Ask her anything! She later became a freelance writer specializing in articles about home and family. In 2015, she released her novel, The Last Dreamer, about a woman whose life turns upside-down when she meets the teen idol she once adored. She’s a proud graduate of Syosset High School, and although she now lives in Westchester, she is still a Long Islander at heart. Visit her at BarbaraSolomonJosselsohn.com.
Lisa Leshaw — “THE TIGHTEST PEAS IN THE POD”
Can anything compare to the deep bond between grandparent and grandchild? We don’t think so! Speaking from her heart about the deep bond and otherworldly experience she shared with her Grandpa Ben, Lisa enchanted our Every Family’s Got One audience with her heartfelt story. Here’s a fun fact about Lisa. She should have been named Liza after Liza Minnelli. However, the powers that be mistakenly wrote an S on her birth certificate instead of a Z! But actually these days Lisa’s favorite name is Grandma. And being Grandma to her six grandchildren means it’s her turn to create those deep bonds. All of this creating brings Lisa back to her special relationship with her Grandpa Ben. Now, please enjoy Lisa performing “The Tightest Peas in the Pod.”
Lisa Leshaw has worked in the mental health industry for 33 years. She’s privileged to conduct empowerment circles for Mamas where they celebrate all things women and the children who love them. When she’s not writing for Her View From Home you can find her playing on the beach with her husband of 40 years and their 6 grandkids. As a hobby, Lisa performs puppet shows with naughty characters who misbehave merely for the laugh.
Maria Adcock — “THE PERM”
Fitting in is important to most people. (Especially when those people are girls in middle school!) Just ask Maria Adcock, the creator of the award-winning Bicultural Mama blog, celebrating the Asian culture. While these days, Maria takes great pride in her Chinese heritage, and great care to pass along that pride to her two young daughters, there was a time when all Maria thought about was fitting in. You see, growing up in the Midwest, Maria’s family was one of the only Asian families in town. Maria thought by giving her naturally straight hair a perm would solve all her problems fitting in with her popular classmates. Let’s see how that worked out for her. Here’s Maria telling us all about it in “The Perm.”
Maria Wen Adcock is a freelance writer and creator of the award-winning BiculturalMama.com blog, a site celebrating bicultural families with a focus on Asian culture. She currently serves as Editor and Board Member for Multicultural Kid Blogs. NY Metro Parents Magazine has honored BiculturalMama.com as a “Best Parenting Blog” pick, and she has been featured in Huffington Post, Today Parents, and Newsday. Maria’s TV appearances include The Dr. Oz Show, Bloomberg News, and HGTV.
Lance Werth — “My Imagination”
Lance Werth has an active imagination. You might even say it’s an overactive imagination. As a kid playing with his favorite Star Wars toy The Millennium Falcon — and later on as an improv performer and TV executive — Lance has had ample opportunity to indulge his imagination on stage and off, which he has found to be both a benefit and a heavy burden. Lance shares a most poignant story about his younger brother’s suicide. He made us laugh and cry. We clearly see how his active imagination does him no favors as he contemplates his complicated relationship with his brother. Now, here’s Lance performing “My Imagination.”
Lance Werth began his career with Gotham City Improv where he performed, directed, and taught improv and sketch comedy. He wrote and starred in stage comedies Night of the Crab, The Dazzledent Primetime Comedy Show, The Nancys: A Broadway Family, Vulture!, Mean Cuisine, and the hit musical comedy Reddy or Not. He is currently pursuing his next big opportunity as a TV programming executive.
KATE MAYER — “Saving Bobbleheads from Drowning”
Aging Parents — it’s part of the circle of life. And, one that storyteller Kate Mayer has personal experience with. Kate shares her touching and hilarious story about helplessly watching her aging parents’ struggle with the loss of their “vast fortune” of odds and ends destroyed in a basement flood. As the oldest (and bossiest) sister of four girls, it’s little wonder that Kate swooped in to try and help her aging parents out in a dire situation. Here’s Kate, reading “Saving Bobbleheads from Drowning.”
Kathryn Mayer – Kate – is a potty-mouth writer, humorist, and activist writing out loud with humor and angst about social issues, parenting, midlife, and sadly, gun violence prevention at www.kathrynmayer.com. She is occasionally funny on Instagram & Twitter @kathykatemayer, and plays well with others on Facebook. She’s a reluctant inductee into AARP, mom of four almost grown and flown kids, and an aspiring writer with rejections to prove it. Her blog is a National Society of Newspaper Columnist award winner, received CT Press Club Best Personal Blog, and received BlogHer Voice of the Year honors. Her essays appear on-line, in-print, and most often, on fridges sticky with smiles and swears.
TONY MENNUTO — “MR. NICE GUY”
Tony Mennuto took to the stage performing “Mr. Nice Guy” in front of a lively and loving audience at the Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington, New York. In his family, Tony went by the name ANT. Maybe it was because he was a tiny kid and could lift 100 times his weight. Or maybe it was just short for Anthony. Now get ready to hear Tony tell us a story about the other Tony in his family — his dad. Who is actually called Tony, not ANT. And will be forever affectionately known as Mr. Nice Guy. But as you’ll hear, even nice guys have tough days. Here’s Tony with “Mr. Nice Guy.”
Tony Mennuto has spent half of his life performing comedy, half of his life in advertising, and half searching for the world’s best hamburger. His comedy credits include: NBC’s Live On Tape, HBO’s Sketch Pad, and 10 terrifying years with NYC-based Gotham City Improv. In advertising, Tony makes people buy things they don’t need at his comedy-focused ad agency Wordsworth and Booth, for clients like Burger King, Tim Hortons, and the Ad Council. Where to find his favorite hamburger? That’s easy. In Huntington. In his backyard. Next to his beautiful wife and hilarious daughter.
Barbara Herel — “The Confession”
Going to confession and fessing up to a priest… is there anything more terrifying to a 13-year-old Catholic girl? Just ask Barbara. She’ll tell you. You might be aware that Barbara Herel is a middle child from a loud, boisterous Long Island family. But did you know she also grew up as a nice Catholic girl going to Catechism classes and Sunday folk mass? Yes, the sacred life was good for Barbara. Until this happened to her during confession. Here’s Barbara to explain more in “The Confession.”
Barbara Herel is the Founder & Producer of Every Family’s Got One. She’s also a freelance writer & blogger, wife & mother, and a recovering middle child. (You bet she has some stories to tell.) You can find her work in oodles of places, including Scary Mommy, Motherly, Adoptive Families, on page 31 of a very cool anthology called The Zen of Midlife Mothering, and right here every Wednesday on Every Family’s Got One.