Programming at Folkmoot

An Overview

Folkmoot draws its core strength from the success of the North Carolina International Folk Festival, which we’ve organized and hosted for 36 years. During that time we’ve welcomed 8,000 international performers from nearly 130 countries to an annual summer celebration.
Now in a 40,000 square foot facility, our organization’s vision is to repurpose that building – the Historic Hazelwood School – into a multi-stakeholder, year-round resource for arts and cultural engagement, educational enrichment, creative entrepreneurship, and community development. 
We envision a community that welcomes diversity, celebrates multiculturalism, embraces creativity and participates wholeheartedly in activities that connect us.

To these ends, we produce the following programs:

Cultural Crash Courses
Timely lectures and community dialogue led by experts from Western Carolina University, designed to help local residents understand would culture and the context surrounding world events. 
Southern Storytellers Series
Produced in collaboration with local partners and hosted by author Chris Cox, our Southern Storytellers Supper Series features authors, historians, musicians and storytellers accompanied by an illustrative food and beverage menu, audience questions, musical performances, visual art displays, dance, and/or panel discussions. 
Friendship Dinners
There are few better ways to get to know folks than over a meal, especially if that meal is rich in its flavors, its history, its family traditions (and recipes), passed along generation after generation. Folkmoot and community partners offer friendship dinners throughout the year; most are held at the Folkmoot Friendship Center but some are held at partnering restaurants.
Partnering Events
Folkmoot is all about community-building, so it stands to reason that partnerships are important to us:  partnerships allow us to stretch the budget, create important outreach, make new friends, and reach new audiences. With 40,000 square feet of Friendship Center, we have room for partners!
In addition to our legacy International Festival (detailed below), we produce:
Folkmoot’s outdoor folkways gathering features Americana musicians, Plott Hound and heritage demonstrations, southern storytellers, crafts vendors and more! Held in Maggie Valley in May.
An afternoon of craft beers and ciders, international food trucks and great music in downtown Canton. Held in Canton in September.
Great Balsam Songwriters in the Round Series
Begun at an inn in Balsam, NC, in 1996 and modeled after similar performances at Nashville’s famous Bluebird Café, the Great Balsam Songwriters in the Round Series, now hosted at the Historic Hazelwood School/Folkmoot Center, presents signature in-the-round shows featuring talented songwriters and performers. Many performances feature Grammy and CMA award winners, and all include writers of many top-ranked songs. Good food, good drink, a warm atmosphere and extraordinary talent are always on tap!
Live music in our 300-seat Queen Auditorium
We schedule live music year-around in Queen Auditorium, one of Haywood County’s premiere listening rooms.
During the Folkmoot International Festival
Camp Folkmoot
During the Festival, dancers of all ages and abilities who are inspired by folk dance and live music can learn international folk dance with performers from around the globe. 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.
Cherokee World Games
A multi-sport cultural event hosted by Cherokee stickball teams. Featuring food trucks and Cherokee vendors.
International Day
A day-long street fair in downtown Waynesville, NC, featuring food, vendors, music and dancing!
Parade of Nations
The traditional opening of the Folkmoot Festival is a parade of visiting teams down Main Street, Waynesville