Meet the Folk-ers The Richmond Folk Festival begins Oct. 7.

By Michael Yockel



This image was captured at the 69th National Folk Festival, held in Richmond, VA from October 12 - 14, 2007.
Festival moments past: folk dancers, left, and a traditional musician, right.

A dizzying array of music, food and art, the three-day Richmond Folk Festival emphatically puts the life into folklife by celebrating local, national and international cultural traditions on a mega scale. This year, its seven stages burst with performances by Italy’s Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino, gospel legends The Fairfield Four, zydeco accordionist Geno Delafose, rock ‘n’ roll pioneer Gary U.S. Bonds, Cape Breton fiddler Natalie MacMaster, and Afghanistan’s Homayoun Sakhi and Salar Nader, among dozens of others, who represent every conceivable musical genre. Meanwhile, the Virginia Folklife Area features specialties—fried apple pie, Mexican mole and Filipino lechon, for starters—prepared by the state’s “home cooks” (no “chefs” allowed), plus cooking demonstrations. This image was captured at the 69th National Folk Festival, held in Richmond, VA from October 12 - 14, 2007.Also: myriad regional and ethnic food vendors, craft beers and specialty wines. Not forgetting a folk art marketplace and interactive family activities. All a mere two-and-one-half-hour drive from Baltimore. And, wait, it’s free. “For three days every fall, this festival reframes the arts—they’re not distant or aloof or obscure or out of reach,” says Festival Director Lisa Sims. “They are engaging and relatable and accessible. It’s truly Richmond at its best.” Oct. 7-9. richmondfolkfestival.org

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