WINONA, Minn. — Storytelling is best done around a table as guests share stories and form deeper connections and an understanding of one another.

On this theme, the public is invited to register for “My Big Fat Greek Dinner” on Tuesday, April 26, a fundraiser for the inaugural Sandbar Storytelling Festival, planned for Oct. 14-15 in Winona.

The Greek dinner, a delectable five-course meal that will leave participants yelling “Opa!” will feature celebrity chef Gary Diomandes, who serves on the festival board. Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options will be available.

The event, which begins at 6 p.m. at the Blue Heron in Winona, 162 W. 2nd St., will also feature a live auction. Jon Kohner will auction off a variety of specialty dinners, Italian handbags, an autographed Vikings jersey, and more. Anyone interested in donating higher-end auction items to help launch this event can contact Diomandes at

The cost is $75 (+fee) and the event is limited to the first 60 to register at Find the registration link at

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