Kids in the GLFF Children's Folk Activities area explored campus traditions as part of our "Campus and Community" program this year. One of the activities was the tradition of float-building!
They constructed a replica of MSU's Beaumont Tower and it will be on parade in the MSU Homecoming Parade on Friday, Oct. 12 in East Lansing. Many of the kids who helped build it will also be marching with it. Learn more about MSU Homecoming activities here.
The MSU Homecoming parade will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, October 12, 2012. The parade begins at the intersection of Abbot Road and Burcham Drive, travels south on Abbot Road, east on Grand River, south at Collingwood, south on Farm Lane and concludes at the corner of Farm and Shaw lanes.
GLFF MARKETPLACE: 'STREET STORIES'
Did you visit the GLFF Marketplace at the folk festival? We were proud to present a variety of artists with recycled and upcyled goods. Haslett educator and GLFF presenter Ben Pineda interviewed a number of the artists for these "Street Stories," to show how they learned their craft and are passing on a tradition.
Here's a slideshow compilation by long-time festival-goer Patrick Kerwin. He does a great job at capturing the culture, tradition and community that makes this event so special. Thanks, Pat!
THANKS, EVERYONE! WE HAD A GREAT TIME!
There was so much going on throughout the streets of downtown East Lansing. Did you catch any of these programs?
GLFF KICKS OFF FRIDAY, AUG. 10 WITH ZYDECO IN THE DANCE TENT!
Join us Friday, Aug. 10, at 6 p.m. as the MSU Museum's Great Lakes Folk Festival kicks off with MSU's own Sparty -- and the Cajun sounds of Leroy Thomas and the Zydeco Roadrunners in the Dance Tent in downtown East Lansing!
Friday night features a dazzling line-up of cultural expressions from across America and around the world: blues, bluegrass and old-time stringband, Irish Celtic, Dominican Merengue, Armenian, Indian, polka and more roots and rhythms. Thanks to the City of East Lansing for sponsoring the music program.
The Taste of Traditions foodways vendors will be open Friday night as well with authentic regional and ethnic food.
Marketplace and children's activities are in full swing beginning at 12 noon Saturday and Sunday, anchored at the Albert-Abbot intersection -- along with a new "Campus and Community" program, with exhibits and sessions exploring MSU's pioneering land-grant origins and building on that tradition through today's innovations. Learn more here:
Please give! Suggested donation is $10 per day, per person.
NOTES AND UPDATES:
-Most programs are under tented areas, so the event goes on rain or shine (except in the event of severe weather). For the open-air City Hall music stage, performances would be moved inside the Marriott, main floor.
-Change to the musical artist line-up: Warner Williams will be unable to perform at GLFF due to a health emergency. Bluesman James Mabry will fill in his sets with Jay Summerour.
TRADITIONS SHOWCASES ALL THREE DAYS: PART MASTERY, PART MAGIC!
Accordion Traditions - Friday, Aug. 10, 8 p.m., Abbot Stage
Featuring Bua's Brían Ó hAirt (Irish Celtic), Joaquín Díaz (Merengue)
and Leroy Thomas (Zydeco) Accordion Traditions will compare and
contrast accordion styles from Ireland, the Dominican Republic and
From Blues to Bluegrass - Friday, Aug. 10, 9 p.m., Abbot Stage
Blues and Bluegrass have a bit more in common than you might think.
Warner WIlliams, Jay Summerour and Claire Lynch will talk about their
lives and careers playing two of our southern-born American
Fiddle Traditions - Saturday, Aug. 11, 1 p.m., Abbot Stage
Always one of the Great Lakes Folk Festival's favorites, Fiddle
Traditions will compare and contrast fiddle styles as performed by
Bua's Devin Shepherd (Celtic), David Bass (Old-time) and Bryan
McDowell (Bluegrass), as well as the generational relationship of the
Many people think of folk music as a guitar and banjo and fiddle. And
while we certainly have plenty of those at the festival each year,
many cultures have found unique ways with which to produce sounds and
music... sometimes with but a string or two; sometimes with dozens of
strings. In this showcase, we will feature the Indian Sitar (Hasu
Patel), the Kamanche (Saeed Kamjoo), the Begena and Krar (Temesgen
Hussein) and the Kanun (Ara Topouzian).
Percussion Traditions - Sunday, Aug. 12, 12 noon, Abbot Stage
Guitars and fiddles and accordions often get most of the attention
while those that keep the beat are kept (often literally) in the
background. In this showcase, we will feature the Indian Tabla (Vishal
Nagar), the Iranian Daf and Tumbak (Mehdi Darvishi), Merengue Tambora
(Peter Barzey) and Guira (Raul Villa Rojas) and Zydeco Rubboard
Airport Jam - Sunday. Aug. 12, 3 p.m., Abbot Stage
It is not uncommon for musicians to cross paths in airports, and it's
very uncommon for musicians to not want to play music together when
they've got the chance. René Meave (Tex-Mex), Leroy Thomas (Zydeco),
Devin Shepherd (Irish Celtic) and Frank Lee (Old-Time) will each kick
off a tune and the rest will follow.
GLFF news and updates
GREAT LAKES FOLK FESTIVAL SCHEDULE POSTED ONLINE
A tentative performance schedule for the MSU Museum's Great Lakes Folk Festival Aug. 10-12 is now posted online.
Again this year, GLFF is using the SCHED event organizer system. Go to the schedule page, click the schedule arrow for options: view the schedule by day, by stage, in list or grid, as well as in a printable format.
There's also a QR code to use with smart phones. A mobile-friendly version is available for iPhone, Android and Blackberry. Special thanks to MSU Office of Campus Sustainability for their sponsorship of the GLFF mobile web app.
LISTEN TO THE ROOTS AND RHYTHMS: MUSIC SAMPLES ONLINE
Visit the GLFF web site for newly posted music clips, featuring a fantastic line-up of musical traditions, including Celtic, bluegrass, Zydeco, Dominican, polka, Armenian, Indian, gospel and more roots and rhythms. Thanks to the City of East Lansing for sponsoring the music program.
Local radio stations are also planning to preview our musical program and other festival activities. Tune in to WMMQ/94.9 and the Capitol City Blues Cruise with Scotty Allman, Sundays, 7-9 p.m.; WDBM/88.9 and Progressive Torch & Twang, Tuesdays, 8 p.m. - midnight; and WLNZ/89.7, Michigan Music Box, Thursdays at 7 p.m. and Saturdays at 3 p.m.
CAMPUS AND COMMUNITY' ON OUR NATION'S 'FRONT LAWN'... AND EAST LANSING
MSU Museum and GLFF curators are working right now at the Smithsonian's annual Folklife Festival, which has a focus on "Campus and Community" for its educational exhibits. The Smithsonian event, on the nation's "front lawn," in Washington, D.C., goes on through July 8. Next up, we'll adapt it for an exhibit at GLFF, Aug. 10-12.
Drawing on the Smithsonian’s "Campus and Community" theme, GLFF children's activities will explore campus lore and MSU traditions, including
-Painting "the Rock"
-Planting a small 4-H Pizza Garden
-Decorating a heritage tree to honor family members
-Building a homecoming float for the 2012 fall parade
The MSU Dairy Store will also be on hand! The "Campus and Community" program and children's activities take place Saturday and Sunday at GLFF, 12 p.m. - 6 p.m., and are primarily on and around Abbot Road -- across from City Hall.
2012 MICHIGAN HERITAGE AWARDS
2012 Michigan Heritage Awardees will be honored at GLFF on Sunday, Aug. 12, at 3:30 p.m. The Michigan Heritage Award is the state's highest distinction to honor individuals who continue their family community and cultural traditions with excellence and devotion.
-Johnnie Bassett, Oak Park (Oakland County), Blues guitar and vocals
-Paulette Brockington, Highland Park (Wayne County), Swing dance and Lindy hop
-The Ship's Company, Friends Good Will, South Haven (Van Buren County), marlinespike seamanship
-René Meave and Guillermo Martinez, Plainwell (Allegan County) and Kalamazoo (Kalamazoo County), Tejano music (Michigan-style)
The Michigan State University Museum is looking for volunteers to help at the Great Lakes Folk Festival (GLFF) in Aug. 10-12 in downtown East Lansing.
Volunteer positions include festival set-up and takedown, bike parking, assisting in the children's area, staffing the information booth and GLFF marketplace, and collecting donations in the "bucket brigade." More than 400 volunteers are needed to help produce the event. Most volunteer shifts are three hours long.
The Great Lakes Folk Festival is the MSU Museum's annual arts and culture festival, showcasing the best in traditional music, authentic food and handmade crafts from across the country and the world.
Please donate to help sustain our folk festival programs! We depend on a diverse mix of funding -- from national and state grants, to MSU departments, to businesses and corporate partnerships, and Great Friends, like you!
Make a gift online: Donate Here from the main page!
NEW 'GREAT FOLKS' BLOG
Michigan State University Museum has launched GREAT FOLKS! - a new blog dedicated to expanding the community of tradition bearers and those who want to learn more about the music, stories, dance, foodways, art and cultural heritage of Michigan and beyond. Bob Blackman, long-time host of WKAR's "Folk Tradition" will blog, along with a team of MSU Museum contributors committed to sharing news and information, and more traditional arts activities and resources of the MSU Museum and other organizations around the state.
The blog is sponsored by the Michigan State University Museum's Michigan Traditional Arts Program, a partnership with the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.
CONSTRUCTION IN EAST LANSING THIS SUMMER; ADAPTING OUR GLFF SITE
We'll be working around some major construction projects in downtown East Lansing this summer, so don't be surprised to see a few changes in our festival site.
Everything's there, but we'll be moving west and north to accommodate the projects that are anchored around the intersection of Albert and MAC. If you attended the East Lansing Art Festival a few weeks ago, we'll have a pretty similar layout.
The main changes you'll notice: our main open-air music stage will be in the City Hall Parking Lot, off Abbot road. (Bonuses will be some tree cover and a grass berm!)
Also, the Children's Folk Activities Area will be across the street from City Hall, also off Abbot Road.
MSU MUSEUM SEEKS ARTISTS, VENDORS FOR GLFF MARKETPLACE, AUG. 10-12
The Michigan State University Museum is seeking traditional arts and “green” artists and vendors of “green” lifeways products for its annual Great Lakes Folk Festival, Aug. 10-12 in downtown East Lansing.
Curated by the MSU Museum staff, the marketplace will be limited to 60 artists and vendors who meet the criteria for a traditional/folk or green artist. Folk or traditional art is generally learned by example from a family or community member, through imitation and repetition, rather than through formal instruction such as classes or workshops. Traditional art, as practiced by ethnic, regional, occupational, familial, and religious groups, refers to the traditional expressions through which these communities maintain and pass on their shared sense of beauty, identity, and values. Green artists take used or recycled materials and upcycle them to make art or functional objects. The products convey the artists' wisdom, skill and creativity for conserving the planet and using materials in a sometimes recognizable, and sometimes surprising way.
New this year: interested vendors should go to zapplication.org and search for MSU Museum's Great Lakes Folk Festival. ZAPP is an online application system that allows artists to upload high-resolution digital images of their artwork and apply to participate in juried art shows, festivals and fairs. The application deadline is June 15, 2012.
The Great Lakes Folk Festival showcases the traditional cultural treasures of the nation's Upper Midwest and a sampling of the best of traditional artists from around the country and the world. The festival encourages cross-cultural understanding of our diverse society through the presentation of musicians, dancers, cooks, storytellers and craftspeople whose traditions are rooted in their communities. The festival includes nearly 100 musicians or dancers in groups, who perform at least twice and sometimes as many as four times over the weekend. Also featured are traditional and other food vendors, craft vendors and many other individual artists/demonstrators. There are four performance stages, a children's hands-on activity area, demonstration area, and the folk arts marketplace. In addition there are special programs every year, which feature some aspect of traditional culture. This year's special program is Campus and Community.
Festival hours are: Friday, Aug. 10, 6 - 10:30 p.m.; Saturday, Aug. 11, noon - 10:30 p.m.; and Sunday, Aug. 12, noon - 6 p.m. For more information, call the MSU Museum at (517) 432-GLFF (4533) and on Facebook and Twitter (twitter.com/GLFF).
The Great Lakes Folk Festival is presented by the Michigan State University Museum, Michigan's first Smithsonian affiliate. The MSU Museum's Michigan Traditional Arts Program researches, documents, preserves, and presents our shared heritage and cultural expressions.
Photo by Pearl Yee Wong, MSU Museum.
MORE ECLECTIC THAN EVER FOR MSU MUSEUM’S 2012 GREAT LAKES FOLK FESTIVAL, AUG. 10-12
The MSU Museum's Great Lakes Folk Festival has always been known as an eclectic collection of music, dance, arts and culture from across America and around the world, and the 2012 program is shaping up to be one of the most diverse in the event’s history. The event is set for Aug. 10-12 in downtown East Lansing, and aptly enough, this university-city partnership takes on the educational program theme, “Campus and Community,” developed jointly with the Smithsonian Institution.
The music program features Celtic, bluegrass, a cappella gospel, Zydeco, and the contrasting stringed instruments sounds from the Armenian kanun, Ethiopian begena, and Indian sitar. Musical artists perform two to four times throughout the weekend, so visitors have a chance to see the bands they like and discover new genres. The preliminary 2012 line-up, sponsored by the City of East Lansing, is:
-Traditions Showcases- On stage sessions that include, 3 to 5 musicians, from several bands, who compare styles, history and technique. Past Showcases have included fiddle, guitar, accordion, family band and more.
Meanwhile, the MSU Museum’s annualMichigan Heritage Awardswill enrich the music program at GLFF with three of four 2012 honorees recognized for music and dance traditions and expected to perform:
-Johnnie Bassett, Blues Guitar and Vocals, Oak Park, Michigan
-Paulette Brockington, Swing Dance and the Lindy Hop, Highland Park, Michigan
-Rene Meave and Guillermo Martinez (founders of Los Bandits), Michigan-style Tejano, Kalamazoo, Michigan
[-The fourth MHA honoree is The Ship’s Company, Friends Good Will, of South Haven, for marlinespike seamanship, or ropework and knot-tying.]
A performance schedule will be set in July.
The award-winning Great Lakes Folk Festival, produced by the MSU Museum's Michigan Traditional Arts Program, is a celebration of culture, tradition and community. The Michigan State University Museum works year-round to develop this festival program that reflects the immense variety and vitality of art, skill, knowledge, and wisdom of our cultural heritage for the public. GLFF offers a one-of-a-kind mix of music and dance stages, demonstrations of traditional arts and storytelling, authentic ethnic food, an arts marketplace, craft artists, and many special activities for kids and their companions.
“Festival-goers appreciate the rich and authentic experience, and often note how the event promotes a greater understanding of diverse cultures, how it brings people together, and how it strengthens community in the way the programs resonate and endure,” observes Marsha MacDowell, founding director and MSU Museum curator of folk arts.
‘Campus and Community’:
This year’s theme for GLFF educational programs and exhibits is “Campus and Community,” an adaptation of a special program to be presented at the 2012 Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, D.C. MSU Museum curators are working with the Smithsonian to develop a program that will debut on the national mall and next come to East Lansing, revolving around the 150th anniversary of public and land-grant universities, as well as the USDA. The program highlights how universities, like MSU, work in communities reinventing agriculture, developing sustainable solutions, transforming communities and building on tradition. “Campus and Community: Public and Land-grant Universities and the USDA at 150” is produced in partnership with the Association of State and Public Universities and the United States Department of Agriculture.
The Great Lakes Folk Festival Marketplace returns with more recycled and upcycled green goods, from jewelry to garden and fiber art, and sculpture. The MSU Museum also showcases master artists in textiles, basketry and other traditional arts.
Also on tap:
Children's activities include making traditional kids' crafts, games and pastimes, gardening projects, demonstrations by youth folk apprentices, MSU campus lore and traditions and more.
Taste of Traditions Foodways: with authentic regional and ethnic food - Greek, Indian, Mexican, Thai and more.
The festival site -- across the street from the MSU campus -- spans the downtown core of the city for three days of festival fun. Find out more athttp://greatlakesfolkfest.net or follow GLFF on facebook and twitter.
Festival fast facts:
Festival hours are: Friday, Aug. 10, 6 - 10:30 p.m.; Saturday, Aug. 11, noon - 10:30 p.m.; and Sunday, Aug. 12, noon - 6 p.m. For more information, call the MSU Museum at (517) 432-GLFF (4533) or learn more athttp://www.greatlakesfolkfest.net and on facebook (Great Lakes Folk Festival) and twitter (twitter.com/GLFF).
Admission is by donation (suggested $10 per day) and contributions leading up to the event and on-site -- sustain GLFF.
Parking is available in downtown ramps and across Grand River Avenue on the MSU campus (in designated areas; free on weekends). GLFF also provides bike parking on-site, as well as CATA bus services from off-site lots at MSU (Lot 91 at Hagadorn and Service roads) and in East Lansing (Abbot Center at Saginaw and Abbot roads).
More than 400 agile volunteers assist the MSU Museum in staging the event - from artist transportation, children's activities, information booth, site set-up and teardown, ice delivery and visitor surveys.
The Great Lakes Folk Festival is presented by the Michigan State University Museum, Michigan's first Smithsonian affiliate. The MSU Museum's Michigan Traditional Arts Program researches, documents, preserves, and presents our shared heritage and cultural expressions. Primary financial support for GLFF comes from the City of East Lansing, Michigan State University Office of the Provost, University Outreach and Engagement, the National Endowment for the Arts, and many MSU departments. In addition, nearly 100 corporations, foundations and organizations also support GLFF annually, as well as individual donors, "Great Friends."
This award-winning event is one of the region's premiere arts programs and is expected to draw more than 90,000 visitors throughout the weekend to celebrate culture, tradition and community. GLFF was named the state's top public humanities program by the Michigan Humanities Council.
Arts and culture at Michigan State University:
Arts and culture at MSU play a critical role in nurturing the human spirit while contributing to a richer quality of life. Museums, galleries, and gardens along with libraries, historic sites, and performance spaces provide a catalyst for cultural exchange of diverse ideas and inspirations. At the same time, audiences on campus and around the world take advantage of academic and research outreach programs such as public broadcasting, online resources, and publications. Learn more athttp://artsandculture.msu.edu .
MSU MUSEUM HELPS CRAFT 'CAMPUS AND COMMUNITY' PROGRAM AT SMITHSONIAN FOLKLIFE FESTIVAL, GLFF
In 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed legislation to establish the land-grant university system and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Today, the land-grant mission of “knowledge with public purpose,” is evident in research, learning and community engagement projects that make the world safer, healthier and more sustainable. The 2012 Folklife Festival program “Campus and Community: Public and Land-grant Universities and the USDA at 150” celebrates 150 years of partnership between universities, the USDA and communities.
The Festival takes place Wednesday, June 27, through Sunday, July 1, and Wednesday, July 4, through Sunday, July 8, outdoors on the National Mall between Seventh and 14th streets. All events are free. Festival hours are 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. each day, with special evening events such as concerts and dance parties beginning at 5:30 p.m. The Festival is co-sponsored by the National Park Service.
“Campus and Community” will focus on four themes that reflect the current work of public and land-grant universities and the USDA: reinventing agriculture, sustainable solutions, transforming communities and building on tradition. Each theme area of the program will allow visitors to interact with university and USDA staff, professors, students and community members highlighting exciting research and engagement projects. From master gardeners to Hawaiian traditional healing, from managing invasive species to helping communities recover from natural disasters, the program will cover an array of ways universities and the USDA put research to action every day.
The program will also feature Smithsonian U., where visitors can listen to short informative talks by master teachers; the Test Kitchen, which will include cooking demonstrations using ingredients raised or researched at agricultural experiment stations; The Commons, an area promoting dialogue about important issues affecting universities, the USDA and communities; The Justin S. Morrill Performing Arts Center, a large stage where student groups and other regional groups will showcase world class music and dance, from mariachi to Hawaiian hula; the Learning Laboratory Family Activities Center, where families can experience hands-on art and science activities; and Alumni Hall, an area for graduates of public and land-grant universities and USDA programs to reconnect with each other and share memories. Visitors will also be able to visit the Festival Marketplace to purchase crafts, food items and popular books and recordings relating to the universities and the USDA.
More than 25 land-grant and public universities will participate in this year’s Festival, including consortia of Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Tribal Colleges in the land-grant system, and Hispanic Serving Institutions.
C. Kurt Dewhurst, director of arts and cultural initiatives for UO&E and curator of folklife and cultural heritage at the MSU Museum, is co-curating the "Campus and Community" program. The Smithsonian program will be recreated on a smaller scale as a featured part of the MSU Museum's 2012 Great Lakes Folk Festival, Aug. 10-12 in downtown East Lansing. The MSU Museum is Michigan's first Smithsonian affiliate.
“Campus and Community: Public and Land-grant Universities and the USDA at 150” is produced in partnership with the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Participating Universities include the University of California, Davis; the University of Florida; the University of Hawaii; the University of Illinois; Indiana University; Iowa State University; the University of Maryland; Michigan State University; Mississippi State University; the University of Missouri; Montana State University; Oregon State University; the University of Tennessee, Texas A&M University; Washington State University and West Virginia University. The University of Vermont is a Contributing University.
About the Festival
The Smithsonian Folklife Festival, inaugurated in 1967, honors tradition bearers from across the United States and around the world. With approximately 1 million visitors each year, the Festival unites performers and visitors in the nation’s capital to celebrate the diversity of cultural traditions. It is produced by the Smithsonian’s Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. The Festival’s website is www.festival.si.edu.