On a sunny Saturday afternoon earlier this year, students ages 6-18 and their families joined 826DC for our Tivoli’s Astounding Urban Legend Writing workshop. We explored the origins and impact of urban legends and then collaborated on a brand-new legend about The Amazing Tivoli, the mysterious magician behind our magic storefront!
Having learned about plot structure, character design, and other storytelling essentials, the group wrote the following story:
Tivoli’s Best Magic Trick
Tivoli chases Zookatoe out of the carrot and packaging peanut-strewn store. Tivoli yells in anger, “You better clean up after yourself!” Zookatoe transforms into a rabbit and dashes away, into the Columbia Heights Farmers’ Market. Distracted by the carrots, he turns into a human and accidentally bumps into a vendor, knocking a carton of Thin Air bottles over.
“That’s what you get, you carrot fiend!” Tivoli yells. Sighing to himself, he mutters, “Now I gotta clean up this mess.” He mumbles a Scamdenavian hex, turning Zookatoe back into his rabbit state.
Ding Ding! The doorbell rings, and a Yelp reviewer enters Tivoli’s Magic Store. Sweeping carrots into a dust bin, he says, “Oh, I didn’t see you come in! How may I help you?” The Yelp reviewer responds, “I am from Yelp. I deserve the upmost respect, or you will get a bad review and your store will be shut down before you can say ‘Abracadabra.’”
Tivoli is shooketh. He decides that he cannot scam this Yelp reviewer, or his 1-star rating will fall even lower.
At the Farmers’ Market, as the glass falls to the ground, Zookatoe realizes that he’s been hexed. “Oh! A cute little rabbit!” I want to take it to the Fourth Dimension, Momm!” Panicked, Zookatoe hops back to the store, climbs up to the stoop, and tries to ring the doorbell. A crowd forms as people from the Farmers’ Market take pictures.
Tivoli’s nose starts blinking red as he hears Zookatoe crying to be let into his store. Tivoli smiles at the Yelp reviewer and kindly says, “Excuse me for a minute.” As Tivoli walks away, the Yelp reviewer checks their phone and sees a white bunny hopping outside of Tivoli’s Magic Store on Snap story. Tivoli comes in with Zookatoe in his hands as the Yelp says, “Do you know anything about this rabbit?
Tivoli flashes a wry smile, and says, “You wanna see a magic trick?” He quickly grabs a top hat, stuffs Zookatoe into it, and puts him in a suitcase. Tivoli un-hexxes Zookatoe and opens the suitcase. Zookatoe jumps out in his human form, with an aggravated face…
We left the story open-ended so that each student could write their own original endings. You can write and submit your own original ending through the form below. Scroll past the form to learn more about how you can support or get more involved with 826DC’s workshops!
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There are plenty of ways to get involved with our Saturday or Evening Writing Workshops, along with our other programs! You can…
Register your favorite young person for an upcoming workshop
Suggest an idea/topic for a new workshop
Provide support as a volunteer