This holiday season, Folgers® is partnering with StoryCorps, a non-profit organization dedicated to capturing our nation’s stories, to encourage families across America to share their memories and connect with loved ones over a cup of coffee. In an effort to help families connect and share traditions across all generations, Folgers is a proud sponsor of the StoryCorps, 2017 Great Thanksgiving Listen® program, which focuses on giving Americans of all ages the opportunity to record a conversation with a grandparent, teacher, mentor or loved one over the holidays.
Stories, like coffee, are better when shared, which is why Folgers is reuniting loved ones during a time when people are reminiscing and reflecting on memories and traditions. The brand is inviting fans to share who they would like to reconnect with on www.folgerscoffee.com/share-a-coffee for a chance to win an in-person reunion.
“Sitting down to share a cup of coffee with a friend or loved one can bring people together through meaningful conversation, which is the driving force behind everything we do at StoryCorps,” says Emily Janssen, a storytelling expert at StoryCorps. “As one of our sponsors of this year’s Great Thanksgiving Listen, the Folgers brand is an ideal partner because storytelling and coffee are so often a part of our holiday traditions when we gather with loved ones around the kitchen table.”
To help fans meaningfully connect with one another, the brand enlisted Janssen to share her top storytelling tips to be used as a reference throughout the storytelling interview process, and when connecting with family over the holidays:
- Take time to listen: Invite someone that you want to know more about, such as a beloved relative, close friend, mentor, or neighbor, to sit down with you in a quiet spot, perhaps over a warm cup of coffee, to share stories and traditions together. Some people may be hesitant, so to ease their hesitation, emphasize that everybody’s story is important. Let your interview partner know that you would be honored to listen to their story.
- Break the ice: If you’re interviewing a shy relative or friend, think of a few simple warm-up questions that will make them feel comfortable and at ease. For example, ask your grandmother about her daily morning walk, what she had to eat for breakfast, how she likes to drink her coffee, or where she was born as a way to begin the conversation.
- Tell a story: Don’t hesitate to tell a story about your interview partner, and try to bring up your favorite shared memories. This can be a time to tell your interview partner how much he or she means to you, and why you want to learn more about their story today.
- Don’t spare the details: Remind the person you are interviewing to recall special times you’ve shared together to help draw out a story. Sometimes the smallest detail, such as a particular smell or taste, can bring back a flood of memories. Ask questions that evoke these details, such as: “What did your kitchen smell like when you were growing up?” and “Did you have any family breakfast traditions on holidays or weekends?”
- Find common ground: The holidays can bring us together with people we love, but with whom we often disagree. Don’t be afraid to reach out to the relative who sees the world differently than you. Avoid trying to change their opinions or beliefs, instead use this as a chance to ask about what’s most important — family, work, love, hopes and dreams for the future. Listening can go a long way toward understanding each other a little bit better.
- Do it now and save it for later: It’s easy to put off interviewing a parent or grandparent because life is busy—especially during the holidays. But don’t wait – take one hour this year to sit down with someone you care about over a cup of coffee and ask about their life. Consider recording your conversation, using the StoryCorps App, a tape recorder, video camera, or computer you have in the house. Years from now, you will cherish being able to listen to and share the voices and stories of the people who mattered most in your life.
- Relax and have fun: The holidays can be stressful. The pressure of hosting family or cooking the perfect holiday meal can be overwhelming. Taking time to slow down and share traditions over a cup of coffee is a good way to reflect on what’s most important – your family and friends. These reflections can remind you to be yourself and help the conversation flow.
For more information on how to enter the Folgers Share a Coffee contest and for an opportunity to win an in-person, coffee-inspired reunion and other prizes, visit Folgerscoffee.com/share-a-coffee. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of the 50 United States and (D.C.), age of majority (18+ in most states) VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Enter Contest by: 12/1/17. For Official Rules and complete details, visit Folgerscoffee.com/share-a-coffee. Sponsor: The J.M. Smucker Company, 1 Strawberry Lane, Orrville, Ohio 44667.
About The J.M. Smucker Company
For 120 years, The J.M. Smucker Company has been committed to offering consumers quality products that bring families together to share memorable meals and moments. Today, Smucker is a leading marketer and manufacturer of consumer food and beverage products and pet food and pet snacks in North America. In consumer foods and beverages, its brands include Smucker’s®, Folgers®, Jif®, Dunkin’ Donuts®, Crisco®, Pillsbury®, R.W. Knudsen Family®, Hungry Jack®, Café Bustelo®, Martha White®, truRoots®, Sahale Snacks®, Robin Hood®, and Bick’s®. In pet food and pet snacks, its brands include Meow Mix®, Milk-Bone®, Kibbles ‘n Bits®, Natural Balance®, and 9Lives®. The Company remains rooted in the Basic Beliefs of Quality, People, Ethics, Growth, and Independence established by its founder and namesake more than a century ago. For more information about the Company, visit jmsmucker.com.
The J.M. Smucker Company is the owner of all trademarks referenced herein, except for the following, which are used under license: Pillsbury® is a trademark of The Pillsbury Company, LLC and Dunkin’ Donuts® is a registered trademark of DD IP Holder LLC.
Founded in 2003 by Dave Isay, StoryCorps has given more than 400,000 people—Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs, in towns and cities in all 50 states—the chance to record interviews about their lives. The organization preserves the recordings in its archive at the Library of Congress, the largest single collection of human voices ever gathered, and shares select stories with the public through StoryCorps’ weekly podcast, NPR broadcasts, animated shorts, digital platforms, and best-selling books. These powerful human stories reflect the vast range of American experiences, wisdom and values; engender empathy and connection; and remind us how much more we have in common than divides us. Learn more at storycorps.org.
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