Our Friend, Edward Broadwell, Board Emeritus

Ed has been a part of Folkmoot since its inception more than three decades ago. Along with founder Clint Border and a group of community leaders, he helped kick start this great organization. He has continued to be an active volunteer and champion for Folkmoot. At their recent annual meeting, The Board Of Directors recognized Ed by giving him the Director Emeritus Award for his long service, advocacy, and consistent support of Folkmoot.

Ed and his family have been coming to Folkmoot for years, and the tradition now extends to Ed’s grandchildren. Even the family members who are no longer nearby try to attend Folkmoot Festival whenever they can. He says it is part of their children and grandchildren’s heritage.

Two of Ed’s favorite events are the Gala and the Candlelight Closing. He thinks the closing event is such a moving ceremony because of the emotions surrounding the formation of new friendships from around the world that often last a lifetime. When asked about a favorite memory, he finds it difficult to come up with just one, as there have been so many over the years. However, he notes that he loves to see the performers’ enthusiasm about coming to the U.S., many for the first time, and also the mutual excitement of the hundreds of hard-working volunteers each year who help make the festival a success.

Ed also believes that Haywood County hosting these international guests is a big responsibility because the county is representing American culture. He adds that Folkmoot’s successes are the region’s successes. “Folkmoot has helped bring Western North Carolina together. Haywood County has collaborated with surrounding counties to successfully run the festival, which has created a special fellowship in the region.”

Go to www.folkmoot.org and get your tickets to experience the wonder of international culture through music and dance!

Camp Folkmoot, “Hands Around the Globe”

“Hands Around the Globe” is a new Folkmoot event – a day camp – scheduled for July 21st at the Folkmoot Friendship Center.  The camp goal is for students (early elementary – high school) to discover traditions from other countries through participation in dance, music and shared learning.  Camp participants will work with international performance troupes attending Folkmoot Festival and the interaction is designed not only to teach dance, but to offer opportunities for learning about cultural awareness and global respect.

“We hope to create everlasting friendships,” said camp coordinator Caroline Brown Williamson, who is also the current STEM-E student engagement coordinator with Western Region Education Service Alliance (WRESA) and Grad Coach for Jackson County public schools.  Her own attendance at the Hazelwood School (now the Folkmoot Friendship Center), coupled with her professional years in education and long personal history and engagement with Folkmoot that began with her mother and has been passed on to her own children, makes Brown Williamson the perfect person to help launch Camp Folkmoot.  “Caroline has been on board since we first began talking about a festival camp and she also understands more than most our hopes to get the community more involved with Folkmoot, as a festival and a place with meaningful programs,” added Angie Schwab, executive director of Folkmoot.

Camp Folkmoot – Hands Around the  Globe– will take place from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. and the cost is $40.00 per person.  Lunch, snacks, drinks, a make-and-take craft and the dance collaboration, culminating in a performance, is included in the price.  Discounts are offered for four or more.  It is recommended that students 5th grade or younger be accompanied by an adults and groups include an adult leader.  Contact caroline@folkmoot.org for more information. To register, Folkmoot.org or 828-452-2997.

It is hoped that the day camp can expand into longer residential camps, offered both during Folkmoot Festival as well as other times of year. Get Tickets!

Schedule: Camp Folkmoot – “Hands Around the World”
Friday, July 21, 2017 – Folkmoot Friendship Center at Sam Love Queen Auditorium

8:30 am – 9:00 am – Check In Folkmoot Auditorium

9:00 am Welcome & Introductions

9:15 am Hands Around the World Icebreaker Activity

10:00 am International Folkmoot Dance Lessons Begin

11:30 am -12:30 pm Lunch in the Folkmoot Cafeteria

12:30 pm Hands Around the World-Craft + Appalachian Traditional Square Dance Lesson with the Honorable Joe Sam Queen

1:45 pm Group Pictures & Final Practice for Group Performance

2:15 pm Final Group Performances (Parents and community invited)

3:00 pm Closing Circassian Circle

Go to www.folkmoot.org and get your tickets to experience the wonder of international culture through music and dance!

Folkmoot 2017: Ayalot Hanegev of Israel!


The Israel Representative Dance Ensemble “Ayalot Hanegev “comes to Folkmoot from the city of Be’er-Sheva. The group was founded in 1980 under the artistic direction of choreographer Moti Alkiss. Ayalot Hanegev performed at Folkmoot in 1996 and Folkmoot is excited to have the talented troupe returning to Haywood County once again.


The Israel Dance Ensemble has represented Israel in 77 countries all over the world during their 38 years of existence. They have appeared on national TV channels in Israel and international networks. The group comes highly recommended from the various events they have performed at and when the group came to Folkmoot in 1996, Mayor Henry B. Poy said, “These group members are artists in every sense. A lot of people have now put Israel at the top priority of their travel list after experiencing the wonder of these talented performers. We would love to have this group visit us again.”


Unlike many other forms of folk dance, Israeli folk dance is only about 60 years old. Israeli folk dancing is typically performed to songs in Hebrew and includes circle, partner, line, and individuals dances. Along with the talented dancers, Ayalot Hanegev is bringing two singers and several musicians who play the keyboard, accordion, drums, and trumpet.

Go to www.folkmoot.org and get your tickets to experience the wonder of international culture through music and dance!

Quilt Art by the Shady Ladies

June 2-4, 2017 the Folkmoot Friendship Center will host the annual exhibition Quilt Art by the Shady Ladies. The show is open from 10a.m. until 5p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and from noon until  4p.m. on Sunday. There is a $5.00 entry fee.

This year the members of the Shady Ladies Quilting Group have been challenged to represent Haywood County architecture in original art quilts. “The subjects the artists selected vary from new public buildings to interesting signs to even include structures that are now only memories,” explained Jane Cole, one of the leaders of the group.  “If you enjoyed our Barn Challenge quilts last year, Haywood’s MANMADE Angles has a broader focus and will not disappoint.”

There is much history to be found in the quilts. For example, Shady Lady, Chris Kroot, chose ‘The Owl’ as inspiration for her quilt. This building is located along the railroad tracks on the Old Asheville Highway in Haywood County and was built during the Great Depression by Earnest Skaggs. He was a master craftsman and constructed the building by hand with nothing more than a pick-up truck and a wheelbarrow.

“It took Skaggs 15 years to complete the building, which was in operation until 1970 as a drive-in restaurant and produce stand,” Chris Kroot elaborated. “The diner was popular after WWII with tourists visiting the National Park, train travelers going to Asheville, and local families. Why was it called ‘The Owl’? Evidently there was an old aspen tree on the other side of the road where a screech owl would sit almost every day. One day it landed on the building so Skaggs decided to call it ‘The Owl’.”

In addition to the historic architectural pieces, the Shady Ladies will exhibit 100 of their recently made quilts. Their designs range from artistic wall hangings to traditional bed quilts. The show also includes a boutique stocked with small quilts and quilting-related items.

“The show is really a benefit for the community,” said Wendy Bowen, Shady Lady leader. “All proceeds from our raffle quilt will be divided among Haywood County Hospice, Pigeon St. Community Center, and Meals on Wheels.”

For information about Shady Ladies, visit our Facebook page: Shady Lady Quilting Group.


Celebrate May Day! And Folkmoot USA! May 2!

Celebrate May Day with Folkmoot

Join your friends and neighbors – Saturday, May 2 – to Celebrate May Day with Folkmoot USA’s renewed vision and mission of a globally-connected community through cultural exchange! Much of Western Carolina is expected to be on hand at the Folkmoot Friendship Center, 112 Virginia Avenue (the historic Hazelwood School), to dance, sing, play music, … Read more