"From Cajun lore to possum tales, Doug adds a special touch to any festivity. His storytelling delights people of all ages."
--Barbara Freeman and Connie Regan-Blake
"Doug is a heartwarming lyricist with a deep interest in the natural environment and people's relation to it. Believe me. this teller has a story of interest for any and everyone."
--Wake Audubon Newsletter, National Audubon Society
Wild Roots "…refreshes the spirit like a hot cup of sassafras tea."
Woodslore "…full of woods sense, common sense and humor."
"Thoreau would have enjoyed Wildwoods Wisdom."
"He's been called an herbalist, ranger, humorist, folk doctor and myth maker, but none of these titles does justice to the astounding energy and knowledge that Doug Elliott brings to the people who hear his stories and who enter the woods with him as their fearless and faithful guide. A workshop with Ranger Doug is a journey into a plethora of subjects and experiences (related to the natural world): identifying and gathering, edible wild plants, mushrooms and medicinal herbs, learning basketry and bird calls; tracking animals and swamp tromping…"
--Omega Institute for Holistic Studies
"Doug Elliott was one of the most engaging storytellers at the National Storytelling Festival. He has a fine ear for dialects encountered on his travels, and has collected delightful stories from around the country. His travel anecdotes and woods lore make the outdoor world come alive for his listeners."
--Brad Jolly, National Storytelling Resource Center
Doug Elliott is a naturalist, herbalist, storyteller, basket maker, back-country guide, philosopher, and harmonica wizard. For many years made his living as a traveling herbalist, gathering and selling herbs, teas, and remedies. He has spent a great deal of time with traditional country folk and indigenous people, learning their stories, folklore and traditional ways of relating to the natural world. In recent years he has performed and presented programs at festivals, museums, botanical gardens, nature centers and schools from Canada to the Caribbean. He has been a featured storyteller at the National Storytelling Festival. He has lectured and performed at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto and conducted workshops for the Smithsonian Institution. He has led ranger training sessions for the National Park Service and guided people on wilderness experiences from down-east Maine to the Florida Everglades. He was named harmonica champion at Fiddler's Grove Festival in Union Grove, N.C. He is the author of five books, many articles in regional and national magazines, has recorded a number of award winning albums of stories and songs, and is occasionally seen on PBS-TV, and the History and National Geographic Channels.
In recent years he has received a variety of honors. The National Storytelling Network (the largest storytelling membership organization in the world) inducted him into their Circle of Excellence for "exceptional commitment and exemplary contribution to the art of storytelling." The International Herb Association presented him with the Otto Richter Award honoring his work with herbs and useful wild plants. The National Association for Interpretation (the professional organization of park rangers, naturalists, museum curators, etc.) gave him the Master Front Line Interpreter Award for his "mastery of interpretive techniques, program development, and design of creative projects" celebrating the natural world and our human connection to nature.
Elliott's passion for the natural world developed in early childhood roaming the woods and waters around his home. His dad used to say, "That boy knows what's under every rock between here and town.”
He still roams the woods today. He has traveled from the Canadian North to the Central American jungles studying plant and animal life and seeking out the traditional wisdom of people with intimate connections to the natural world. And he still looks under rocks. These days he uncovers more than just a few strange critters; he brings to light the human connection to this vibrant world of which we are a part.
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Thanks so much for being our special guest at the 2nd Annual Xtreme Roan Adventures (The Naturalist Rally for KIDS). We had about 80 excited kids, and with parents and helpers the total number of people was around 170. Most of them got to follow you on your wonderful Nature Walk. You had them spell bound with your fabulous storytelling, harmonica playing, singing and even a little yodeling mixed in. The atmosphere was magical. I don't think we could have possibly selected a better keynote speaker and walk leader. The crowd had another exciting Doug Elliott event when you did an indoor show. They were thrilled to be treated to more of your amazing stories with world class harmonica playing. The only hard part was seeing it end.
As a fellow naturalist, I am very impressed with your knowledge of nature. I could learn a lot from you. In fact, I already have in the two times I was at your performances and also from your books and CDs. Everyone I talked to at the rally shared in my excitement of having such a wonderful talent there. You can bet that I will be looking for you to entertain again in the future.
Director of Xtreme Roan Adventures
Friends of Roan Mountain