Folkmoot neighborhood party on Thursday!

Folkmoot neighborhood party on Thursday!

We’re going to have a Folkmoot neighborhood party of Thursday!

We’re all going to gather on Hazelwood Avenue in West Waynesville with our visiting dancers, with our neighbors and with our Hazelwood neighborhood businesses to celebrate each other and the historic part of Waynesville we all call home.

An afternoon party – noon to 3 p.m. – will offer a chance for Hazelwood neighbors and businesses to mix and mingle with our visiting Folkmoot 2018 dancers and for the general public to get to know both the dancers and our Hazelwood neighboring businesses.

Hazelwood was for much of the mid- to late-20th Century it’s own town, a factory town of working class folks, it’s own central business district and quite apart and separate from the larger Waynesville. But in the 21st Century, long after the factories closed, Hazelwood dissolved its city charter, became part of Waynesville and is now experiencing a re-birth as a commercial center  and trending neighborhood with great restaurants, cute shops and valuable businesses.

Folkmoot Center is housed in the historic Hazelwood School on Virginia Avenue.

The event is just part of Folkmoot’s celebration of our own regional tradition and heritage along with the cultures, dance and art we bring to our community from around the world.

Folkmoot 2018 formally opened Thursday and runs through Sunday and will feature performing dance troupes from Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailand and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

Here is the rest of our schedule for the week

Thursday: Franklin, North Carolina. A 7 p.m. performance at the Smoky Mountain Performing Arts Center (All groups). 

Friday: Asheville, North Carolina. A 2 p.m. matinee in the Diana Wortham Theatre. A 7 p.m. performance in the Diana Wortham Theatre.

Saturday: International Festival Day – Downtown Waynesville, North Carolina. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Another free and public event, a wonderful day of celebrating international friendships and cultural exchange!

Saturday: Performance of all groups at Haywood Community College, 7 p.m.

Sunday: Candlelight Closing, Stuart Auditorium, Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. A rich, colorful & emotional last festival performance filled with tradition, joys and even a few tears!

Please call 828-452-2997 for more information about Folkmoot 2018!

Share on the social media!

We look forward to seeing and re-sharing all your Folkmoot experiences. Help us find what you post by using hashtags, #Folkmoot or #Folkmoot2018.  

Our Folkmoot Facebook Page has long had an active and growing community – now over 5,000 friends! Many of you visit and engage with it often – and we’re grateful for that.

The Folkmoot Instagram is always very active, too! (Plenty of visiting performers post photos.)

The Folkmoot Twitter presence has increased exponentially in recent months and we’ve added the Folkmoot face to other popular social channels: GooglePlus and Tumblr. 

The Folkmoot YouTube channel is evolving, getting up-to-speed and timely.

We’re just continuing the grand Folkmoot party online and we invite you to join us on any or all of the social channels with which you engage most!

Again, we invite you share your Folkmoot experience online – on the social channels you use most (or, maybe even, discover new ones). Please use the hashtags, #Folkmoot and #Folkmoot2018, when sharing. We will try our best to keep up and repost, share whatever you post online.

A very special guest graces Folkmoot 2018!

A very special guest graces Folkmoot 2018!

A very special guest graces Folkmoot 2018!

One of the world’s leading experts on folk dance festivals, folk art festivals and citizen of the world, Dr. Udomsak Sakmunwong, can be found among working his way through nearly all Folkmoot 2018 events, often encouraging his hometown dance troupe, the Lampang Kalayanee School, one of our visiting dance troupes.

But Dr. Sakmunwong is not just a world authority on folk festivals he is past-president – for eight years – of CIOFF, the International Council of Organizations of Folklore Festivals and Folk Arts. CIOFF is the world-wide governing body of folk festivals, a world partner of UNESCO, and each year certifies Folkmoot Festival as worthy of the world’s attention.

“Folkmoot is one of our best and biggest festivals,” he explained in a quiet moment just as our hectic 10-day festivals was getting underway. “It is your volunteers who give it what it takes to land it among our best and the way the entire community embraces the festival each year.”

Folkmoot 2018 runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailand, Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

Dr. Sakmunwong’s visit to the 2018 festival in not his first. He has been to Waynesville and Folkmoot a few times before, not only as president of CIOFF but also as the good and dear friend of Rolf Kaufman, Folkmoot’s most important and senior volunteer and director.

“Rolf and I have been dear friends for many years,” he explained. “From the time Rolf came to CIOFF as the American representative, representative of Folkmoot and to help us with our committee on finances.”

Although Dr. Sakmunwong retired as CIOFF president in 2005 he has remained active in the organization as senior advisor, East Asian representative and representative of the Thailand’s National Cultural Council, which he currently chairs and through it helps support cultural arts and cultural exchange in Thailand’s 77 provinces.

“It’s a labor of love,” he says with a smile.

He also beams with pride at the Lampang Kalayanee School, based in his home town of Amphoe Muang, in the Lampang Province.

“It is one of our biggest and best secondary schools,” he boasts.

It’s dance troupe has certainly been a hit in Folkmoot 2018.

Dr. Sakmunwong was a university professor, teaching political science in Thailand and at Northeastern Illinois University in the U.S.. He was schooled in Japan, London and the University of Chicago.

He is also quite certain his 2018 visit to Waynesville and the Smoky Mountains will not be his last.

“Your’s is a very special region,” he said. “In all the world it’s a very special place.”

Tuesday is Cherokee & Canton for Folkmoot 2018!

Tuesday is Cherokee & Canton for Folkmoot 2018!

Tuesday is Cherokee & Canton for Folkmoot 2018!

After a day of rest and play on Monday for our visiting Folkmoot dancers – much needed after a raucous and wonderful opening weekend – festival performances resume Tuesday in Cherokee and Canton.

Cherokee is always a fascinating place for visiting Folkmoot performers!

The town of Cherokee and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians always draw the particular interest of our international dance troupes.

And for good reason, of course.

The story of the Cherokee people is both tragic and triumphant. Tsalagi history, heritage, legends and traditions are Smoky Mountain treasures more valuable than the gems once plentiful in these ancient peaks. It is rare, indeed, for international dancers to arrive without a thirst for more knowledge and understanding about First Nation people of America.

As an added element in this 2018 festival, at least 10 members of our visiting Le Ragazze Italiane dance troupe of Canada are also members of the Canadian Métis (pronounced, “maytee”) First Nation people. 

They will perform a special dance for Cherokee tribal leaders when the dancers visit the tribe on Cherokee Day, Tuesday.

Folkmoot 2018 runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailland and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

Along with culture and musical and dance traditions from around the world, Folkmoot takes pride in and likes to also celebrate the unique culture of our own Smoky Mountains, part of the greater Blue Ridge, the land known to  Tsalagi as Shaconage, the land of the blue smoke.

Historic Colonial Theater in Canton

As is a tradition with every Folkmoot Festival, Haywood County’s historic mill town is a must-stop on the festival tour and 2018 will be no exception.

The Canton performance – all groups – is set for Tuesday!

The 7 p.m. performance in the historic Colonial Theater will be followed by an after-party at Bearwaters Brewery.

The rest of the week!

July 25: Hendersonville, North Carolina. A 2 p.m. matinee performance at Blue Ridge Community College will feature all performing troupes.

July 25: Waynesville, North Carolina – Tranquility Farm Fundraiser, 6 p.m. (call 828.452.2997 for details, tickets.)

July 25: Maggie Valley Welcome Wagon, Maggie Valley, North CarolinaElevated Mountain Distilling Company. 7 p.m. A very special and intimate performance by three to four of our visiting dance troupes.

July 26: Folkmoot Center. 12 p.m. – 3 p.m. – Hazelwood Neighborhood Hospitality. Meet & Greet with Performers. 

July 26: Franklin, North Carolina. A 7 p.m. performance at the Smoky Mountain Performing Arts Center (All groups). 

July 27: Asheville, North Carolina. A 2 p.m. matinee in the Diana Wortham Theatre. A 7 p.m. performance in the Diana Wortham Theatre.

July 28: International Festival Day – Downtown Waynesville, North Carolina. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Another free and public event, a wonderful day of celebrating international friendships and cultural exchange!

July 28: Performance of all groups at Haywood Community College, 7 p.m.

July 29: Candlelight Closing, Stuart Auditorium, Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. A rich, colorful & emotional last festival performance filled with tradition, joys and even a few tears!

Please call 828-452-2997 for more information about Folkmoot 2018!

Share on the social media!

We look forward to seeing and re-sharing all your Folkmoot experiences. Help us find what you post by using hashtags, #Folkmoot or #Folkmoot2018.  

Our Folkmoot Facebook Page has long had an active and growing community – now over 5,000 friends! Many of you visit and engage with it often – and we’re grateful for that.

The Folkmoot Instagram is always very active, too! (Plenty of visiting performers post photos.)

The Folkmoot Twitter presence has increased exponentially in recent months and we’ve added the Folkmoot face to other popular social channels: GooglePlus and Tumblr. 

The Folkmoot YouTube channel is evolving, getting up-to-speed and timely.

We’re just continuing the grand Folkmoot party online and we invite you to join us on any or all of the social channels with which you engage most!

Again, we invite you share your Folkmoot experience online – on the social channels you use most (or, maybe even, discover new ones). Please use the hashtags, #Folkmoot and #Folkmoot2018, when sharing. We will try our best to keep up and repost, share whatever you post online.

We’re just getting started with Folkmoot 2018!

We're just getting started with Folkmoot 2018!

We’re just getting started with Folkmoot 2018!

Oh yes! It’s been a huge opening weekend – Parade of Nations, Many Cultures Day, plenty of folk dance peformance – but, oh, we have a full week ahead of us, ranging all over Western North Carolina!

Folkmoot 2018 formally opened Thursday and runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailand and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

Folkmoot will range from Hickory (today) to Franklin with Cherokee, Canton and Asheville in between.

We're just getting started with Folkmoot 2018!And a special treat in Waynesville today: our Folkmoot Sunday Soirée will feature an evening of locally grown internationally themed delicacies, locally grown young musicians and our Festival Friendship Dinner!

The festive, informative, entertaining and delicious evening will begin at 5 p.m. on the Greenspace at Folkmoot Friendship Center, 112 Virginia Avenue in Waynesville.

Reservations and tickets are available here.

Ticket sales and contributions support Folkmoot programs which sustain cultural arts for youth & families in Haywood County. Parking is available in the back of the Folkmoot building for year-round events.

Celebrating our second year of the Sunday Soirée, all are invited to experience the foods of eight world cultures, presented by the chefs of the Blind Pig Supper Club with entertainment provided by regional youth celebrating cultural arts.

Performers will represent Appalachian, African, American Jazz and Cherokee cultures. Patrons will have the opportunity to meet and greet Folkmoot’s international performers over dessert!

Our regional performers will include: Appalachian fiddle princess Lillian Chase;  the renown Tuscola High School Jazz Band & Percussion Ensemble; the Urban Arts Institute dance troupe, featuring African-American dance and award-winning Cherokee Vocalist, Dvdaya Swimmer

Opening weekend video:

Here is the rest of our schedule for the week

TODAY: Hickory, North Carolina. Two performances, 2 p.m. & 5 p.m. Hosted by the Hickory International Council in the Drendel Auditorium (4 groups) *includes post-performance Cultural Conversations. Tickets will be available through the International Council & Drendel Auditorium when they are made available. 

TODAY: Sunday Soirée, Waynesville, Folkmoot Greenspace, Folkmoot Center. An international friendship dinner, beginning at 5 p.m., featuring food from the Blind Pig Supper Club and conversations, entertainment by Western North Carolina youth cultural groups. 

July 23: a free day for our performers. You might run into them anywhere exploring our beautiful Smoky Mountains!

July 24: Cherokee Ambassador’s Day, 3 p.m., Cherokee Central High School, Cherokee, North Carolina. The cost is $20 for adults, $5 for kids and it’s an extraordinary opportunity for our visiting performers to engage with and learn more about our region’s treasured Native American culture & history

July 24: Canton, North Carolina. A 7 p.m. performance in the historic Colonial Theater followed by an after-party at Bearwaters Brewery.

July 25: Hendersonville, North Carolina. A 2 p.m. matinee performance at Blue Ridge Community College will feature all performing troupes.

July 25: Waynesville, North Carolina – Tranquility Farm Fundraiser, 6 p.m. (call 828.452.2997 for details, tickets.)

July 25: Maggie Valley Welcome Wagon, Maggie Valley, North CarolinaElevated Mountain Distilling Company. 7 p.m. A very special and intimate performance by three to four of our visiting dance troupes.

July 26: Folkmoot Center. 12 p.m. – 3 p.m. – Hazelwood Neighborhood Hospitality. Meet & Greet with Performers. 

July 26: Franklin, North Carolina. A 7 p.m. performance at the Smoky Mountain Performing Arts Center (All groups). 

July 27: Asheville, North Carolina. A 2 p.m. matinee in the Diana Wortham Theatre. A 7 p.m. performance in the Diana Wortham Theatre.

July 28: International Festival Day – Downtown Waynesville, North Carolina. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Another free and public event, a wonderful day of celebrating international friendships and cultural exchange!

July 28: Performance of all groups at Haywood Community College, 7 p.m.

July 29: Candlelight Closing, Stuart Auditorium, Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. A rich, colorful & emotional last festival performance filled with tradition, joys and even a few tears!

Please call 828-452-2997 for more information about Folkmoot 2018!

Share on the social media!

We look forward to seeing and re-sharing all your Folkmoot experiences. Help us find what you post by using hashtags, #Folkmoot or #Folkmoot2018.  

Our Folkmoot Facebook Page has long had an active and growing community – now over 5,000 friends! Many of you visit and engage with it often – and we’re grateful for that.

The Folkmoot Instagram is always very active, too! (Plenty of visiting performers post photos.)

The Folkmoot Twitter presence has increased exponentially in recent months and we’ve added the Folkmoot face to other popular social channels: GooglePlus and Tumblr. 

The Folkmoot YouTube channel is evolving, getting up-to-speed and timely.

We’re just continuing the grand Folkmoot party online and we invite you to join us on any or all of the social channels with which you engage most!

Again, we invite you share your Folkmoot experience online – on the social channels you use most (or, maybe even, discover new ones). Please use the hashtags, #Folkmoot and #Folkmoot2018, when sharing. We will try our best to keep up and repost, share whatever you post online.

It’s a big weekend for Folkmoot 2018!

It's a big weekend for Folkmoot 2018!

It’s a big weekend for Folkmoot 2018!

Yes! Folkmoot Festival 2018 – Folkmoot’s 35th edition – has arrived and will bring folk dance, color, music & pageantry all over Western North Carolina for 10 days!

It began last night with our annual Gala Under the Stars and will explode over this coming opening weekend with many events and peformances!

Folkmoot 2018 formally opened Thursday and runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Ghana, Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailand and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

 

Opening Weekend!

Opening weekend kicks off with the groups’ arrival July 18th in Waynesville and charges immediately into events and performances.

Kids just naturally want to dance and at Folkmoot 2018 they will be able to do exactly that TODAY – with the performers – at Camp Folkmoot! The one-day, all-immersive dance camp will be part of the Folkmoot 2018 Festival and is set for July 20!

The Grand Opening Matinee is set for this afternoon in Queen Auditorium, Folkmoot Center. All groups will perform followed by cultural conversations with the audience and dance troupe members.

The Grand Opening Extravaganza at Lake Junaluska’s Stuart Auditorium, always one of the festival’s highlights!

The First Saturday, has it’s come to be known is jam-packed with huge events, free-and-open-to-the-public events and more fun than – maybe, not really – anyone should expect to have in a single day!

First Saturday kicks off with one of the most popular events each year of the entire festival: the Parade of Nations down Main Street, Waynesville. Always colorful and exciting, the whole of Western Carolina (it seems) turns out to see our visiting international dance troupes, local and international musicians, favorite Appalachian and mountain dance troupes all perform and frolic down the main drag of our picturesque mountain town.

Kids, parents, grandparents, adults of all varieties revel in the pageantry and exhilaration of the festive vibe.

First Saturday of Folkmoot 2018 is jam-packedCome to our Folkmoot International Center immediately after the Parade of Nations for Many Cultures Day. The event lasts until 4 p.m. and features 30-vendors, youth activities hosted by community groups, ethnic food trucks, international performers, community dance lessons, and a youth performance stage with local youth fiddlers and dancers. There also will be two Cherokee stickball game demonstrations. The cost of this outdoor festival is $5 for individuals over 5 years old. Visit the Many Cultures Day event post on Facebook, tag “going” and share it on your profile or with friends!

A full performance by all visiting dance troupes at Haywood Community College caps off the day at 7 p.m.! One of the most popular performances of the festival each year, the first HCC performance is always a fun-filled event and moderately priced so the whole family can enjoy the show! Visit the Haywood Community College performance event post on Facebook, tag “going” and share it on your profile or with friends!

Sunday Soirée is set for July 22 – The community is invited to experience the foods of our eight visiting world cultures, presented by the chefs of the Blind Pig Supper Club with entertainment provided by regional youth celebrating cultural arts. Performers will represent Appalachian, African, American Jazz and Cherokee cultures and then meet and greet Folkmoot’s international performers over dessert!

Folkmoot also travels to Hickory, NC, on July 22 for two performances, 2 p.m. & 5 p.m. Hosted by the Hickory International Council in the Drendel Auditorium (4 groups) *includes post-performance Cultural Conversations. Tickets will be available through the International Council & Drendel Auditorium when they are made available. 

Folkmoot celebrates Smoky Mountain culture, too!

Folkmoot celebrates Smoky Mountain culture, too!

Folkmoot celebrates Smoky Mountain culture, too!

Along with culture and musical and dance traditions from around the world, Folkmoot takes pride in and likes to also celebrate the unique culture of our own Smoky Mountains, part of the greater Blue Ridge, the land once known to our native people as Shaconage, the land of the blue smoke.

Along with dance troupes representing the Angl0-Appalachian traditions of dance and music, handed down from the 17th and 18th Century immigrants from the British Isles, our own mountain native people, Tsalagi or Cherokee – our region’s First Nation, play a prominent role in each Folkmoot Festival.

Folkmoot 2018 opens Thursday and runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Ghana, Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailland and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Folkmoot celebrates Smoky Mountain culture, too!Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

The entire Folkmoot Festival with travel July 24 to the town of Cherokee to celebrate for a major celebration, which will include the gift of a special dance from one of our visiting dance troupes, which also includes First Nations people, to the leadership of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.

And one of the more subtle ways in which Folkmoot honors and celebrates our Cherokee friends is something you’ll find hanging around the necks of Folkmoot staff & volunteer festival credentials: specifically designed and hand-beaded lanyards crafted especially for Folkmoot by the festivals’ Cherokee Coordinator Lisa Wilnoty.

Lisa began making the lanyards for the 2016 festival and something of a “new tradition” appears to have been born. She has continued to make more lanyards each year since.

Her journey into lanyard making began just over four years ago when she decided to pursue her passion for traditional Cherokee crafts. Her husband, Freddy Wilnoty II, showed her the basics and from there she began creating her own designs.

When designing these beautifully beaded lanyards, she incorporates an array of colors, especially watercolors to be used as a representation for how water gives and sustains life. 

Many of the guides and staff look at these hand-beaded lanyards as a symbol of Folkmoot, a unique keepsake of all the wonderful memories from the festival. They all recognize the hard work that Lisa puts into making these special gifts. It is humbling to receive one and an honor. 

 “The lanyard represents a sense of unity,” said Festival Guide Gracie Feichter. “All of the colors blend beautifully together, much like we do in our own world. Even though the pattern of beading on each lanyard is different, it symbolizes how we are able to create something beautiful if we work together.”

Volunteers guide the Folkmoot Festival

Volunteers guide the Folkmoot Festival

Volunteers guide the Folkmoot Festival through its 10 days of beauty, pageantry and delightful sights and sounds.

Every non-profit organization depends on volunteers, of course, but the Folkmoot Festival could not have lasted for 35 years without the significant contribution of time, talent and treasure by its volunteers.

Folkmoot Festival 2018 will rely heavily on key volunteers to be the smooth operation festival goers have come to expect.

Folkmoot 2018 opens Thursday and runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Ghana, Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailland and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

Many Folkmoot volunteers have come and gone over the years, each one valuable and each one treasured. The key volunteers – and volunteer leaders – for the 2018 festival will include:

Mayo Ferguson is one of Folkmoot’s longest standing volunteers.  He first began working with us in 1986, took a small break somewhere along the way to get a family going, came back and picked up where he left off.  Of all the things he enjoys about working with Folkmoot he most enjoys the interactions and conversations he can have with people from around the world.  The music, dance, art, and performances are enjoyable but it is what he can learn from someone with a different perspective that he values the most.

 

 

Vivian Poppas is another one of Folkmoot’s longest standing volunteers.  She has been actively working with us for over 29 years and her duties and positions have included a little bit of everything but her favorite position so far has been working as a Guide during the festival.  She also thoroughly enjoys the opportunity to make friends with people from all corners of the globe and to learn about their different cultures.

 

 

Natalie Ballard is studying Business Administration and Law at Western Carolina University with a minor in Political Science. She was captain of the color guard in high school and assistant choir director for the children’s choir at the church she attends. Natalie loves learning about different cultures and getting to experience new ideas. She hopes to one day live in another country.

 

 

 

Michelle Romberger is a another veteran volunteer for Folkmoot. She has volunteered countless hours cooking for friendship dinners, creating the menu for the upcoming festival and providing upkeep to the kitchen. Since her first connection with Folkmoot, Michelle fell in love with the mission of the organization. She calls it an opportunity of a lifetime.

 

 

 

Our Volunteer Spotlight shines on David BortleFolkmoot means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. To David Bortle, Folkmoot is a non-profit that establishes a platform for community building. He appreciates how the Folkmoot festival encourages diverse groups to put their differences aside for the universal love of dance and music. “(Folkmoot is) different people coming together to transcend the American existence,” he said. In the two years of working at Folkmoot, David undoubtedly enjoyed most working with last year’s Israeli performance group. He describes the Israeli group as incredible, hard-working, and cultured.

Folkmoot starts Thursday! R U Ready??

Folkmoot starts Thursday! R U Ready??

Folkmoot starts Thursday! R U Ready??

Folkmoot 2018 – the 35th edition of North Carolina’s official international folk festival – opens Thursday with its annual Gala Under The Stars, moves rapidly to Camp Folkmoot for kids, two grand opening performances – a matinee at Folkmoot Center and the traditional grand opening performance at Lake Junaluska’s Stuart Auditorium – and into the first huge weekend of activities including the always popular Parade of Nations down Main Street in Waynesville, Many Cultures Day at Folkmoot Center, a full performance at Haywood Community College, a trip to Hickory NC, and a very special Sunday Soirée in Waynesville!

Whew! Yeah, we know!!

Folkmoot 2018 runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Ghana, Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailland and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

Named by USA Today as one of the Top Twenty Festivals in North Carolina, Folkmoot 2018 will bring dance and music to colorful life  in Waynesville, Clyde, Lake Junaluska, Maggie Valley, Canton, Cherokee, Franklin, Hickory, Asheville, and Hendersonville. 

What’s New for the 2018 Festival

Folkmoot 2018 will be spectacular! Gala under the Stars, July 19 – 7:00 p.m., Annual Fundraiser for Friends of Folkmoot, $175 per couple. The Gala is the kickoff event for the festival and a fundraiser for Friends of Folkmoot, sponsors and their guests. Held in Waynesville in the field adjacent to the Friendship Center, Friends of Folkmoot members will enjoy specialty foods and beverages while cultural performers take the stage under the stars for their first appearance of the festival. 

Camp Folkmoot – Hands around the Globe, July 20 – 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., $30. Dancers of all abilities ages 10 – 17 years who are inspired by dance and live music can learn international folk dance moves with cultural ambassadors in Waynesville to perform at the Folkmoot Festival. Learn basic concepts and movements, gain an appreciation of the similarities and differences between cultures and hear the timeless, captivating stories behind the dances of each international group. The day includes “make-and-take” cultural crafts and culminates in a short performance with the groups and community participants. Families and youth groups are encouraged to register. Snacks, lunch, and drinks will be provided. Tickets for this event are $30 per camper and will include lunch, snacks and supplies. Discounts are available to groups of four or more if pre-registered together. For more information, contact Elizabeth Burson, 828-452-2997.

Many Cultures Day, July 21, 2017 – 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., $5 admission. This outdoor event is in its third year, scheduled for immediately after the Parade of Nations in downtown Waynesville. The event features live art demonstrations, 30-vendors, youth activities hosted by community groups, ethnic food trucks, international performers, community dance lessons, a youth performance stage with local youth fiddlers and dancers; additionally, there will be two Cherokee stickball game demonstrations. The cost of this outdoor festival is $5 for individuals over 5 years old.

Sunday Soirée , July 22 – 7:00 p.m. Celebrating our second year of the Sunday Soiree, the community is invited to experience the foods of eight world cultures, presented by the chefs of the Blind Pig Supper Club with entertainment provided by regional youth celebrating cultural arts. Performers will represent Appalachian, African, American Jazz and Cherokee cultures and then meet and greet Folkmoot’s international performers over dessert!

2018 Festival Event Schedule

Our schedule is subject to change. Please check the festival schedule page here on our site for additions or cancellations or call the ticket office, 828-452-2997.  All tickets are subject to NC sales tax and an online service fee. The number of performance groups is included for each venue.

Folkmoot 2018 will be spectacular! 

July 19: Gala on the Green – An opening party & performance for Friends of Folkmoot.

July 20: Camp Folkmoot – For kids! Learn international folk dances from our visiting performers!

July 20: Grand Opening MatineeQueen Auditorium, Folkmoot Center. All groups will perform followed by cultural conversations with the audience and dance troupe members.

July 20: Grand Opening Extravaganza! In Lake Junaluska’s Stuart Auditorium, always one of the festival’s highlights!

July 21: Parade of Nations! A public event, beginning at 10 a.m., in which all visiting dance troupes (and many others) parade down Main Street, Waynesville, in one of the festival’s most colorful and joyous events. It’s free and open to the public. Y’all come!

July 21: Many Cultures Day! Come to our Folkmoot International Center immediately after the Parade of Nations. The event lasts until 4 p.m. and features 30-vendors, youth activities hosted by community groups, ethnic food trucks, international performers, community dance lessons, and a youth performance stage with local youth fiddlers and dancers. There also will be two Cherokee stickball game demonstrations. The cost of this outdoor festival is $5 for individuals over 5 years old.

July 21: Haywood Community College. A full performance by all visiting dance troupes. One of the most popular performances of the festival each year.

July 22: Hickory, North Carolina. Two performances, 2 p.m. & 5 p.m. Hosted by the Hickory International Council in the Drendel Auditorium (4 groups) *includes post-performance Cultural Conversations. Tickets will be available through the International Council & Drendel Auditorium when they are made available. 

July 22: Sunday Soirée, Waynesville, Folkmoot Greenspace, Folkmoot Center. An international friendship dinner, beginning at 5 p.m., featuring food from the Blind Pig Supper Club and conversations, entertainment by Western North Carolina youth cultural groups. 

Folkmoot 2018 will be spectacular! July 23: a free day for our performers. You might run into them anywhere exploring our beautiful Smoky Mountains!

July 24: Cherokee Ambassador’s Day, 3 p.m., Cherokee Central High School, Cherokee, North Carolina. The cost is $20 for adults, $5 for kids and it’s an extraordinary opportunity for our visiting performers to engage with and learn more about our region’s treasured Native American culture & history. 

July 24: Canton, North Carolina. A 7 p.m. performance in the historic Colonial Theater followed by an after-party at Bearwaters Brewery.

July 25: Hendersonville, North Carolina. A 2 p.m. matinee performance at Blue Ridge Community College will feature all performing troupes.

July 25: Waynesville, North Carolina – Tranquility Farm Fundraiser, 6 p.m. (call 828.452.2997 for details, tickets.)

July 25: Maggie Valley Welcome Wagon, Maggie Valley, North CarolinaElevated Mountain Distilling Company. 7 p.m. A very special and intimate performance by three to four of our visiting dance troupes.

July 26: Folkmoot Center. 12 p.m. – 3 p.m. – Hazelwood Neighborhood Hospitality. Meet & Greet with Performers. 

July 26: Franklin, North Carolina. A 7 p.m. performance at the Smoky Mountain Performing Arts Center (All groups). 

July 27: Asheville, North Carolina. A 2 p.m. matinee in the Diana Wortham Theatre. A 7 p.m. performance in the Diana Wortham Theatre.

July 28: International Festival Day – Downtown Waynesville, North Carolina. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Another free and public event, a wonderful day of celebrating international friendships and cultural exchange!

July 28: Performance of all groups at Haywood Community College, 7 p.m.

July 29: Candlelight Closing, Stuart Auditorium, Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. A rich, colorful & emotional last festival performance filled with tradition, joys and even a few tears!

The Folkmoot staff is preparing for Thursday’s festival opening! 

The Folkmoot staff is preparing for Thursday's festival opening! 

The Folkmoot staff is preparing for Thursday’s festival opening!

Oh, to be sure, the Folkmoot staff works hard all year long to produce North Carolina’s official international folk festival. But with the festival’s 2018 grand opening the staff often sees all 24 hours in each day – and will through the festivals 10 days.

Folkmoot 2018 opens – THURSDAY – July 19 and runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Ghana, Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailland and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

You will no doubt see the Folkmoot staff scurrying about during each event and performance, making sure the magic all comes off to perfection. If you get a chance, tell the, “thanks,” for all all the hard work they do and all the long hours they give:

Folkmoot’s director is Angeline Schwab. Angie has a background in arts, culture & community and economic development.  Since 2015, Angie has grown Folkmoot to a year-round cultural organization and believes that diversifying the festival, maximizing the use of the building, building strong partnerships and new cultural programming are the way to the future.  Angie grew up in Buncombe County and went to college at UNC-Wilmington.  Since that time, Angie went to graduate school at the University of Oregon where she earned a Masters in Public Affairs and then moved to Humboldt County, California, one of the most beautiful places on the planet to start her career.  Angie, her husband Brandon, their two sons, Avery & Harper and three dogs moved to Waynesville in 2014 to be closer to family. Angie says, “Never before Folkmoot did I understand that folkdance was an opportunity for experiencing diversity and cultural understanding. What a gift to experience the world right here at home and to make so many people happy with a community festival.”

 

This is Laura Shepherd’s fourth year planning for and executing Folkmoot’s special events. As Folkmoot’s Event and Ticket Coordinator, Laura’s favorite part of her job is the interaction with ticket buyers and eventually meeting them at performances. Laura’s background is in catering, hotel and attraction sales which prepared her for the ever-changing needs of working for a non-profit. Laura has traveled the world and lived all over the United States. She has been volunteering and working in Haywood County for over 18 years and lives in Waynesville with her husband, Scott. Being the mother of two, Tessa and Shaw, and stepmom to three daughters, Shantel, Tina, and Monique has been her greatest joy. Laura is enthusiastic about food, gardening, and organizing, all of which makes her perfect for Folkmoot.

 

Folkmoot’s Programming and Group Relations Coordinator Elizabeth Burson is a lifelong Folkmoot enthusiast. As a Waynesville native, Folkmoot has inspired Elizabeth to foster friendships from all over the world and to travel to global destinations in the name of cultural adventure. With six years experience as a Folkmoot guide and now three years as Folkmoot’s programs coordinator, Elizabeth’s primary responsibilities are her favorite, managing the details of group selection, assisting with marketing and working with guides during the festival. Elizabeth is a UNC Greensboro graduate with a bachelors in Communication Studies and is currently working on acquiring a Nonprofit Management Certificate from Duke University. Elizabeth enjoys spending time with her family and friends, watching movies and cooking new recipes.

 

Catherine McCallum has served as the Operations & Volunteer Coordinator for Folkmoot for the past year and a half. Residing in Sylva with her college sweetheart, Brandon, the couple will celebrate five years of marriage this fall. Catherine is a graduate of Western Carolina University with a bachelor’s degree in Hospitality and Tourism and minor in Leadership.  Catherine is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Project Management at WCU and will graduate this December. In her spare time, Catherine loves to kayak down the Tuckasegee River and travel with her husband. Folkmoot has played a big role in Catherine’s experience of diversity in our community which has, in turn, encouraged her to travel the world.

 

Lisa Wilnoty is the Cherokee Community Coordinator for Folkmoot, representing all cultural activities related to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Lisa is in her third year working with the Folkmoot organization, starting as a cultural performer in 2015. Lisa resides in the Wolfetown community with her husband Frederick Wilnoty II. After working with Cherokee cultural organizations for several years, Lisa is learning the Cherokee language and sharing Cherokee history and culture with the Folkmoot family. Lisa says, “We are working to build bridges between people of different cultures and it’s my honor to encourage understanding of Cherokee.” Lisa also serves as a board member of Maverick’s Tsalagi Sunshine.

 

Aaron Owenby has been working with Folkmoot since 2003 and continues to devote his time to us as he loves taking the opportunity to meet a wide range of different peoples from around the globe.  Currently, he serves as the year-round maintenance guy and drives a bus for groups during the festival.

Our sponsors make possible Folkmoot!

Our sponsors make possible Folkmoot 2018!

Our sponsors make possible Folkmoot!

Without a doubt, Folkmoot could not exist – now for 35 years – without the support of our corporate sponsors.

And, yes, we are without question so very grateful for the thousands of private donations and volunteer efforts of the entire community.

But without our generous sponsors – who give not only treasure but also time and talent – there would be no Folkmoot and our region would be without its premier summer festival and North Carolina would be without its official international folk festival.

Folkmoot Festival 2018 ended July 29 but activities and programs continue year-round. Be sure to visit our  Videos & Images Page, here on our website for images of Folkmoot Festival 2018. Our Facebook page is a pretty handy way to keeping up with the latest events.

In addition to those appearing on our Video & Images page, we also have links to larger collections by some of the areas best photographers and videographers. Our Instagram is a pretty active place, too!

Once here in beautiful Haywood County, NC, we invite you to stay awhile and enjoy all our unique and historic region has to offer.

We are grateful for our sponsors and we list them on their own page here on our website and we scroll them continuously at the bottom of our front page. Click on their logos to visit their websites and learn more about their services and products. Visit them often, buy from them, engage them in business.

They sponsor Folkmoot because they are also deeply involved in the broader community of Haywood County and Western North Carolina and because they care about the amazing quality of life we enjoy in our region. They are also care deeply about the cultural exchange and understanding, peace-building to which Folkmoot is committed.

In no certain order (because all are equally important) our team of Sponsors include:

 

The Mountaineer
The Mountaineer
Smoky Mountain News
Smoky Mountain News
Folkmoot
Downtown Waynesville NC
Folkmoot
Blue Ridge Public Radio
Folkmoot
Asheville Citizen-Times

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
The Mountain Xpress

 

 

 

Folkmoot
WNCW 887 Public Radio

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
VisitNCSmokies.com
Folkmoot
Town of Waynesville, NC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
WLOS ABC-TV Asheville

 

 

Folkmoot
WNC Magazine

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Cherokee Historical Preservation Foundation
Folkmoot
Haywood Regional Medical Center

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Evergreen Packaging

 

Folkmoot
Community Foundation of Western North Carolina

 

Folkmoot
Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort

 

Folkmoot
Town of Franklin, NC

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Mast General Store
Folkmoot
Beverly-Hanks & Associates

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Champion Janitorial Supply

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
United Community Bank
Folkmoot
Ingles Markets

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
HVO, Inc
Entegra Bank

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
City of Hickory, NC
Folkmoot
Hickory International Council

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Pepsi Bottling Ventures
Folkmoot
Rotary of Asheville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Town Mountain Preserve
Folkmoot
The Laurel of Asheville

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
The Classic Wineseller
Folkmoot
Silver Bluff Village

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Haywood EMC
Folkmoot
The Village Framer

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Frye Regional Medical Center
Folkmoot
National Endowment for the Arts

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
North Carolina Arts Council

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Haywood County Arts Council

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
International Council of Organizations of Folklore Festivals and Folk Arts
Folkmoot
AmeriPride Linen & Uniform

 

 

Folkmoot
Commscope

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Sheppard Insurance Group
Folkmoot
The Inn at Tranquility Farm

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot
Romantic Asheville Travel Guide
Folkmoot
Kanini’s Dining*Takeout*Catering

 

Folkmoot
Cherokee Bottled Water
Folkmoot
Vicinitus Haywood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folkmoot

Folkmoot Guides map the festival trail

Folkmoot Guides map the festival trail

Folkmoot Guides map the festival trail and without this tough and resilient corps of young Western Carolina leaders the Folkmoot Festival would be stranded in the wilderness.

The Guides are high school and college students who dedicate a summer (often multiple summers) to Folkmoot and serve as counselors, tour leaders, information specialists, sometimes translators and overall top assistant and major domo for each of the international dance troupes visiting Western Carolina for the Folkmoot Festival.

Without this devoted and enthusiastic corps of young leaders the visiting groups might feel lost and overwhelmed by the non-stop adventure that is participating in Folkmoot and the festival itself could simply not survive without the Guides.

For their part, the Guides find the experience nothing short of life-changing. Many Folkmoot Guides have gone on to build careers based in whole or in part on the values they learned through the Folkmoot experience – values of peace-making, cultural understand and cultural exchange.

Folkmoot 2018 opens July 19 and runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Ghana, Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailland and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

The activities, duties and responsibilities of Folkmoot Guides begin well before the festival and last for weeks following the festival. This is no ordinary summer job. It’s more favorably compared, perhaps, to a long-term mission trip – one is which participants both change the world and are changed by it.

Folkmoot Guide Training begins this week

Although working throughout the summer getting ready for the 2018 Folkmoot Festival, the Guides’ training begins in earnest – and in an intense, immersive timetable – on Friday. Yes, Friday the 13th. Whatev.

During the training – and during the Festival – the Guides will live at Folkmoot Center, as will the visiting dance troupes when they begin arriving next week.

Training focuses on topics such as, “what leadership looks like,” “what to expect at Folkmoot,” Folkmoot sign language (yes, we have our own), emergency procedures, conflict resolution & peace-making, world & global politics & societies, Cherokee & First Nations 101, stage management, stage lighting, stage sound and many other topics.

Sound intense? Yes, it is. But along the way they will also have wonderfully fun times and adventures and form bonds with each other – and with the visiting dance troupes – which will last the rest of their lives.

Being a Folkmoot Guide is simply an experience of one’s lifetime. Ask any of them – past or present – and they will tell you.

Folkmoot Guides 2018

If you visit any Folkmoot 2018 performance or event, you will no doubt spot these outstanding young people popping in and out of crowds, dashing and darting about and, generally, making all the magic look like magic.

The 2018 Guide Corps includes:

Heather Davidson has been around Folkmoot since she was a child. Her mother was a volunteer, and Heather spend many summers at Folkmoot with her. She volunteered every year until she was old enough to be a guide. She has since been a guide for Trinidad, Puerto Rico, Uganda, France, and Russia! Her favorite part about Folkmoot is the time in between all the events, shows, and meetings. She loves this time because it’s when she gets to know everyone and become like a family during their time together.

 

 

Yetunde Bashorun is a returning guide with Folkmoot and 2018 will be her second festival.  She was the intern who helped to launch Cultural Conversations in 2017.  Yetunde loves working with Folkmoot because she cares about the organization’s mission to celebrate diversity and inclusion throughout western North Carolina communities. Yetunde loves to be outdoors and is an avid hiker. Yetunde was born in Lagos Nigeria.

 

 

 

Ethan Cronk has worked with Folkmoot during the annual Folkmoot festival for two years now and is coming up on his third year. The last two festivals he worked as an assistant guide and is ready to jump in as a full guide this summer! He loves working with Folkmoot because it offers a family-like community, and he gets to interact with people from all over the world. Ethan will be graduating from Tuscola High School this summer and plans to attend NC State for International Business.

 

 

Avery is returning as an Assistant Guide for the 2018 Festival and attends Tuscola High School.  He is a junior in high school with an array of talents. Avery plays the violin and baritone, works on computers, is a stilt walker, and has studied jujitsu for eight years. 2018 is Avery’s fourth festival. He thought Western North Carolina felt like a new American sub-culture compared to his birthplace in California and was grateful have Folkmoot as an opportunity to have access to international cultures.

 

 

 

Harper is a student at Tuscola High School who is excited to be returning to Folkmoot as an Assistant Guide. Last year he helped out in a variety of ways for including holding the role as lead on souvenirs and being an assistant guide. 2018 is Harper’s fourth festival. Harper is a stilt walker and plays the clarinet, piano, and various percussion instruments. Harper was also the president of the eighth-grade woodwinds and will be Drum Major for the Tuscola High School Marching Band this year.

 

 


Kaitlyn is a student at Tuscola High School where she participates in the Tuscola SWAT Team and is Librarian of Tuscola Band. “I am excited to be working as an Assistant Guide at Folkmoot because it is a great opportunity to experience different cultures and spread diversity throughout the community.”

 

 

 

Grace is a sophomore at Tuscola High School and has experienced many cultures through travels with her family. Grace has a passion for egalitarianism (the doctrine that all people are equal) and shares this value with the Folkmoot organization.  Grace lived in Singapore for two years and she embraced and enjoyed the cultural differences. Grace has helped run a nursery and served on the school’s volunteer outreach program.

 

 

Gracie is a high-school student who enjoys playing the piano and studying foreign languages. She is currently learning Spanish and French. Gracie has been an Assistant Guide for Peru, India and Dominican Republic. After her first festival, Gracie took a trip with her grandmother to Peru to visit the friends she had made at Folkmoot. 

 

 

 

Izzy is a returning Assistant Guide for Folkmoot. “During my time at Folkmoot during the last festival, I was able to experience some truly incredible escapades and would love to encounter more amazing events.” She was raised to respect people of all different races and religions.

 

 

 

 

Alma is a student at Tuscola High School, she enjoys playing her flute in the School’s symphonic band and marching piccolo in the Tuscola High School Marching Band. This will be Alma’s first year working with Folkmoot as an assistant guide and she is most excited about working with people from new and different cultures. She looks forward to meeting new friends and gaining new experiences you can only get from being involved in Folkmoot.

 

 

Jena is a student at Tuscola High school she is optimistic, enthusiastic and extremely excited to work with Folkmoot this year. Her favorite thing about Folkmoot is “being able to interact with different cultures other than her own.” She loves meeting new people that she can learn from and Folkmoot makes her want to keep learning about the world and everyone in it.

 

 

 

Andrea is a student at Tuscola High School where she participates in the Tuscola High School Marching Band, Winter Guard And she is HOSA Vice President. She enjoys playing her clarinet in the schools symphonic band and marching color guard in the schools marching band. Her favorite thing about Folkmoot is being able to interact with different people from around the world that she normally would not be able to meet without this organization.

 

 

Afton is a high school student at Tuscola, she enjoys playing her clarinet in the schools symphonic band and marching color guard in the schools Marching Band, she also enjoys participating in the schools Winter Guard. She enjoys traveling and seeing new places in the world. Her favorite thing about Folkmoot is seeing the diversity and different cultures all working together as well as making lifelong memories with amazing people.

 

 

Folkmoot's summer intern comes home, internationally! 

Connor is an undergraduate student at NC State. He enjoys studying languages and world politics. Over the past year, Connor lived in the Global Village at NC State with international students from over 20 different nations, so coming aboard as a guide will be a natural return to the type of international community he has grown accustomed to.

 

 

 

 

Garrett is a high school student at Tuscola, he plays the trumpet in many ensembles both on and off campus such as the Schools Marching Band and also plays in the school’s jazz band. Garrett is easy-going and will always bring a smile to your face. His favorite thing about Folkmoot is the music of the many cultures presented by the different groups.

 

 

 

Samual Eason Esquivel is 18 years old and a recent graduate of Cherokee High School, GO BRAVES! He loves acting and singing and will be going to school in NYC at AMDA in October for musical theater. He loves traveling and meeting new people. If he had a million dollars he would probably spend half of it on food. This is Easons first year as a guide but has worked with Folkmoot before as a Cherokee performer and ambassador.

 

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!

The town of Cherokee and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians always draw the particular interest of international dance troupes visiting Western Carolina from around the globe for our annual Folkmoot Festival.

And for good reason, of course.

The story of the Cherokee people is both tragic and triumphant. Tsalagi history, heritage, legends and traditions are Smoky Mountain treasures more valuable than the gems once plentiful in these ancient peaks. It is rare, indeed, for international dancers to arrive without a thirst for more knowledge and understanding about First Nation people of America.

We expect the Folkmoot 2018 visiting dance troupes will be no exception. And, as an added element, at least 10 members of our visiting Le Ragazze Italiane dance troupe of Canada are also members of the Canadian Métis (pronounced, “maytee”) First Nation people. 

They will perform a special dance for Cherokee tribal leaders when the dancers visit the tribe on Cherokee Day, July 24.

Folkmoot 2018 opens July 19 and runs through July 29 and will feature performing dance troupes from Ghana, Italy, Czech Republic, Mexico, Thailland and Northern Cyprus and Venezuela as well as Anglo Appalachian and, as always, Cherokee dancers and musicians. 

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performances are available here.

Once here for the festival we invited you to stay awhile and enjoy all our beautiful region has to offer.

For it’s part, the tribe has assigned special representatives, officially designated ambassadors, outstanding young members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, to each of the visiting dance troupes to teach them about Cherokee tradition.

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!
Amy West

Amy West attends Mars Hill University and is a senior studying elementary education. She is the president of their Native American Student Association. She enjoys babysitting and teaching Sunday school at Big Cove Baptist Church. This is her second year as an ambassador with the Folkmoot festival.

 

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!
Mystikal Spirit Armachain

Mystikal Spirit Armachain is eighteen years old, her last name meaning “Backwater.” She is a member of the deer clan within the EBCI. She grew up traditionally learning her native language, crafts and traditions. Her native roots led her to work at the Oconaluftee Indian Village. This is her second year of being an ambassador for Folkmoot.

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!
Karyl Frankiewicz

 

Karyl Frankiewicz is a former Miss Cherokee and former Miss Indian North Carolina. She is a second-time ambassador this year at the Folkmoot festival and does traditional craftwork such as beadwork, pottery, basketry, and finger weaving. She loves playing sports and has her own adult team for a local league.

 

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!
Amorie Gunter

Amorie Gunter will be an ambassador for the second time at this year’s Folkmoot festival. She is last year’s Miss Cherokee and is currently a teacher at Cherokee Elementary School. She loves participating in the festival because it gives her an opportunity to learn about other cultures while educating others about her cultures, traditions, and home.

 

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!
Faith Long

Faith Long is the current Miss Cherokee at nineteen years old. She is in the Jones-Bowman leadership award program and a business management major at Carson-Newman University. She is a 25 under 25 class of 2018 inductee for UNITY (United National Indian Tribal Youth).  She is excited to be a part of the festival this year.

 

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!
Raylen Bark

Raylen Bark is the current Teen Miss Cherokee and her favorite sport to play is basketball. She attends Cherokee High School and her favorite color is blue. She’s excited to be a part of the festival this year.

 

Cherokee is fascinating for visiting Folkmoot performers!
Dvdaya Swimmer

Dvdaya Swimmer is the 11-year-old daughter of Micah and Carrah Swimmer. She is this year’s Junior Miss Cherokee and attends Cherokee Elementary in the fifth grade. She plays basketball, fastpitch softball, performs Cherokee social dances, dances fancy shawl at powwows, and is on the Smoky Mountain Youth Competition Cheer team. Her life goal is to be a representation of her Cherokee people and give her best shot at life and giving back.