Johnny Appleseed to perform Ohio Chautauqua finale tonight

| July 27, 2013

UntitledCOSHOCTON —Ohio Chautauqua, presented by the Ohio Humanities Council, will finish their 2013 performances in Coshocton with Hank Fincken from Indianapolis, IN, portraying naturalist and folk hero Johnny Appleseed.

Fincken is a full-time actor and playwright and has toured the United States performing as numerous historic figures including Christopher Columbus, Henry Ford, Francisco Pizarro, W. C. Fields, and Thomas Edison.  Johnny Appleseed was actually the first character he developed and he has been portraying him since 1982.

“It is as important to me to entertain the audience as it is to educate them,” Fincken said.  “One of my greatest discoveries in doing this kind of work is that I needed to create different versions of my characters for different audiences.”

In preparing to portray Johnny ‘Appleseed’ Chapman, Fincken had to sort through lots of material to find the truths in the story.  “The information out there about Johnny Appleseed is filled with many fictional aspects, and it is a challenge to dig through and find the most important and factual information,” he explained.  “Many of the stories about Johnny Appleseed are recorded but are not actually true.  The myth has gotten bigger than the man.”

Fincken says that John Chapman was definitely a storyteller himself.  “I hope audiences will enjoy the humor in my show along with the serious side,” he stated.”If I could state in a sentence or two what I hope they take away from an evening with Johnny Appleseed, it is that they see a complex man, an eccentric man, and an unusual man.  But that they also see and appreciate that he was a man of peace in a violent time, which is still relevant today.”

Johnny Appleseed will take the stage under the Ohio Chautauqua tent located at the Coshocton County Fairgrounds, tonight at 7:30 p.m. Prior to his performance, there will be musical entertainment by Wildwood and Friends at 6:30 p.m. Admission and parking are free.

Today’s youth workshop, sponsored by the Coshocton Public Library, will be at the Presbyterian Church at 10:30 a.m. and will feature Debra Conner entitled, ‘Inspired by Margaret Blennerhassett’. The adult workshop at COTC at 2 p.m. will feature Marvin Jefferson on York, William Clark, Slavery, and American History.

Sponsors and contributors to the Ohio Chautauqua in Coshocton include The Coshocton Foundation, Montgomery Foundation, Simpson Family Foundation, Kiwanis Club of Coshocton, Kraft Foods, Given Dawson Funeral Home, Tom Leech, Raven’s Glenn Winery, Coshocton Village Inn & Suites, Central Ohio Technical College, Annin & Co., Coshocton Co. Beacon, Coshocton Presbyterian Church, Coshocton Public Library, Willandale Golf Cart Sales, and Frontier Power.

There is no charge to attend the evening performances or the daytime workshops. For more information about The Ohio Humanities Council and Ohio Chautauqua visit For more information about Ohio Chautauqua in Coshocton, contact the Coshocton Visitors Bureau at (740) 622-4877, 1-800-338-4724 or

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Category: Arts & Entertainment

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