New parades & events will spark Folkmoot Festival 2016

New parades & events will spark Folkmoot Festival 2016, the 33rd edition of North Carolina’s official international folk festival set for July 21 to July 31.

The schedule of events has been announced and in addition to new events all over Western North Carolina, the line up includes new public parades in Asheville and Franklin, international issues discussion forums, a new children’s carnival and the always popular – and free – Parade of Nations through downtown Waynesville moved from Friday afternoon to Saturday morning to better serve busy families.

Named by USA Today as one of the Top Twenty Festivals in North Carolina, Folkmoot is a ten-day event featuring more than 200 international performers from ten countries with performances in 12 Western North Carolina communities. Folkmoot is also a Top 20 Event in 2016 in the Southeastern U.S., according to the Southeast Tourism Society.

Folkmoot performers are primarily college students who are acting as cultural ambassadors for their home countries.

Folkmoot 2016 - PolandFor the 2016 Festival groups will travel from China, the Dominican Republic, Finland, France, Ghana, Japan, Peru, Poland, Romania and a special U.S-Mexico collaboration. The 2016 Festival will also include performances by the Eastern Band of Cherokee and other local Appalachian dance groups and bluegrass bands .

You can see them all, featured together and with videos, on our Folkmoot Performers of 2016 page.

Ticket packages and tickets for individual performance are available here as they are added. Keep checking back for updated individual performances.  In the meantime, please explore our year-round events. The Folkmoot Box Office can be reached by phone during business hours: 828-452-2997 , ext. 207.

Please always check our Schedule of Events for upcoming Folkmoot events, showcases and classes and follow our social media posts for the latest updates on  Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, YouTube, Snapchat (mobile only). Please, always use #Folkmoot2016, the festival’s official hashtag,when sharing Folkmoot information and events or to search for the latest news.

Folkmoot, literally a “meeting of the people,” provides programs based on cultural exchange, designed to build global relationships, foster cultural understanding and develop community prosperity. Folkmoot creates opportunities for individuals and communities across the globe to build a deeper sense of connection, mutual respect and shared purpose.

What’s new for 2016?

Folkmoot 2016 - RomaniaFolkmoot recruits new countries each year. In Folkmoot’s 33-year history, we’ve hosted almost 8,000 performers from more than 200 countries.

Parade of Nations has become a staple for Haywood County. This year we are changing the date and time to better allow families to attend. This spectacular event features Folkmoot’s international groups and local organizations, giant puppets and stilt walkers. It’s is a chance for Western Carolinians to welcome our international guests as well as see previews of our visiting troupes’ performances. The parade will be on Saturday, July 23 at 10:00 a.m. on Main Street in Downtown Waynesville.

Many Cultures Kid’s Carnival is a new event for Folkmoot, set for Saturday, July 23 from 12:00 pm until 5:00 pm at the field adjacent to the Folkmoot Friendship Center, 112 Virginia Avenue, Waynesville. This event will include a variety of local organizations and clubs hosting booths with cultural themes including games and crafts. Folkmoot’s international performers will also be sharing their own culture through dance lessons for the children. To top off this amazing event the visiting dance troupes will perform three shows – 1 p.m., 2 p.m. & 3 p.m. – in Folkmoot’s newly renovated Sam Love Queen Auditorium! Each performance will include two groups and will cost $10 for adults and $5 for kids with a $30 cap for larger families. Online ticket sales for the three shows are here, on our tickets page.

Global Issues Forum – July 24 is an opportunity for our community to learn more about the differences and similarities among cultures. Folkmoot International groups will also be able to ask Americans their own questions. This event centered on cultural understanding and learning. Lunch starts at 12 in the gym of First United Methodist Church, Waynesville: $10 for adults $5 for kids. Forum begins at 1 pm. Group performance begins at 2 pm, $18.

Ambassadors Day Cherokee – Another new event for Festival 2016, our friends and neighbors, the Cherokee people or Tsalagi, will share with our visiting dance troupes and festival attendees the unique experience and often tragic but ultimately victorious history of the Cherokee people. The Cherokee culture and traditions are among the very richest offerings Western Carolina has to the rest of the world.

Dress in your best cultural regalia for Folkmoot performances! Festival goers are encouraged to join the fun by sharing your own cultural heritage at all Folkmoot events in 2016. As an example, individuals with Scottish heritage are invited to wear a kilt to any Folkmoot performances. At each event, the “best dressed” will be chosen and this audience member will win a Folkmoot t-shirt. Folkmoot will also feature a photo of these individuals on our social media channels.

How to get involved? Folkmoot USA is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that relies upon donations, sponsorships, Friends of Folkmoot members, ticket sales and grants to hold the Folkmoot Festival each year. Everyone can celebrate and support Folkmoot USA programs by becoming a member through the Friends of Folkmoot on our website, Your donations support community-building events for kids and families and support our international guests during their stay in Waynesville at the Folkmoot Friendship Center, located in the Historic Hazelwood School. Pick up a bulletin at your local Visitor Center or go online to to learn more.

Volunteers Needed – Volunteer groups are still needed to prepare the Folkmoot Center for the Festival and work events. If you, your company, church or civic group would like to help, please contact Doug Garrett at 828-452-2997 to find out how you can help.

Tickets are now on sale for all performances and can be purchased online, in person at the Folkmoot Center, or by calling 828-452-2997. The complete Festival schedule is here. Like us, engage with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, GooglePlus, YouTube and Snapchat (mobile only) to take advantage of special ticket promotions.

The highlights of Folkmoot Festival 2016

Folkmoot 2016 - Grand Opening!Here are some of the highlights of our schedule of events for Folkmoot Festival 2016. Please, always check our official calendar for up-to-the-minute scheduling and schedule changes. Our social media channels will also carrying the latest news and event happenings. The schedule is subject to change. Please visit us often online for additions or cancellations or call the ticket office, 828-452-2997. The number of performance groups are included for each venue.

Tickets are available here.

Wednesday, July 20
7:00pm – Bearwaters Brewing Company, Waynesville. (1 group)

Thursday, July 21
6:00pm – Folkmoot Wanderlust Champagne, Friends of Folkmoot Gala, Eaglenest, Maggie Valley. (All Groups) This spectacular preview performance is for our Friends of Folkmoot members we will be travelling the world all while staying in Maggie Valley. This exclusive event will include local chefs preparing multi-cultural cuisine, on site travel portraits, live and silent auctions for travel related gifts and, of course, breathtaking performances from ten international groups. Private event for Friends of Folkmoot, donors and sponsors.

Friday, July 22
2:00pm – Folkmoot Grand Opening, Eaglenest, Maggie Valley. (All groups) Reserved seating adults: $31-$26; $21; Students & children are 50% off adult tickets
6:30pm – Folkmoot Group Guest Appearance at Mountain Street Dance, Main Street, Waynesville. (1 group) Free event
7:00pm – Folkmoot Grand Opening, Stuart Auditorium, Lake Junaluska. (All groups) Reserved seating adults: $31-$26; $21; Students & children are 50% off adult tickets

Saturday, July 23
10:00am – Folkmoot Parade of Nations, Waynesville. Beginning on North Main St. & finishing at Historic Waynesville Court House. (All groups) Free Event
12:00-5:00pm – Many Cultures Kids Carnival, Folkmoot Friendship Center, Waynesville. (All groups) Free event with ticketed performances: $10 adults; $5 kids: $30 cap for families. Tickets here for 1 p.m. show, , 3 p.m. show.
7:00pm – Haywood Community College, Clyde. (All Groups) Reserved Seating Adults: $31-$26; $21; Students & Children $5

Sunday, July 24
1:00pm – First United Methodist Church, Waynesville. (All groups) Come eat lunch with Folkmoot International groups. Adults: $10; Children $5.
2:00pm – First United Methodist Church, Waynesville. (6 groups) Global Issues Forum. Free Event.
3:00pm – First United Methodist Church, Waynesville. (6 groups) General Admission: $15; Children $5.
3:00pm – SALT Block Auditorium, Hickory. (3 groups) Hickory International Council 828-234-6330. General Admission Adults: $16; Children (12 & under): half price
6:00pm – SALT Block Auditorium, Hickory. (3 groups) Hickory International Council 828-234-6330. General Admission Adults: $16; Children (12 & under): half price

Tuesday, July 26
9:00am-4:00pm – Ambassadors Day, Cherokee. (All groups)
7:00pm – Swain County Performing Arts Center, Bryson City. (5 groups) Adults: $16; Children (12 & under): half price
7:00pm – Colonial Theatre, Canton. (5 groups) Adults: $16; Children $5

Wednesday, July 27
2:00pm – Blue Ridge Community College, Flat Rock. (All groups) General Admission: $31; Children (12& under): half price
7:00pm – Hazel Robinson Amphitheater, Asheville. (5 groups) General Admission $16; Children $5

Thursday, July 28
5:00pm – Parade, Franklin, Main Street. (Free Event)
7:00pm – Smoky Mtn Center, Franklin. (All groups) Reserved Seating Adults: $30-$25; $21

Friday, July 29
4:00pm- Parade, Downtown Asheville, Pack Square. (All groups) Free event
7:00 pm – Diana Wortham Theatre, Asheville, 828-257-4530. (All Groups) Reserved Seating Adults: $33.17, $26-21; Children: $16.05

Saturday, July 30
10:00am- 5:00pm —International Festival Day, A World-Class Arts Event, Main Street, Waynesville. (All groups) (Free event)
9:00pm – Orange Peel Dance Party, Asheville. (All groups) General Admissions: $15

Sunday, July 31
7:00pm – Candlelight Closing, Stuart Auditorium, Lake Junaluska. (All Groups) Reserved Seating Adults: $30-$25; $20; Children: half price

Haywood County students are admitted to all performances, except the Grand Opening and Candlelight Closing for 50% off adult tickets.

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New parades & events will spark Folkmoot Festival 2016