Folk and Traditional Arts Program

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Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission’s mission involves both a commitment to care for the state’s most treasured lands, waters and historic places and a desire to connect all Washingtonians to their natural, cultural, and artistic heritage through memorable experiences in the parks.

Since 2004, the Folk & Traditional Arts Program has added to those memorable experiences with events in state parks by musicians, dancers, craftspeople and storytellers who represent a wide variety of old and new Washington traditions. From tribal canoe family journeys to Cinco de Mayo festivities, from fisher poetry to Ecuadorian song, from Hawaiian hula to old-time square dances, the program brings people together — some to celebrate a common heritage and some to learn about the traditions of others.

2021 FOLK & TRADITIONAL ARTS PROGRAM EVENTS


The 2021 Folk & Traditional Arts Program season will include virtual and live events due to the continually evolving COVID-19 pandemic. 

  1. Cultural Festivals
  2. Performance Series

DATE

EVENT

PARK

May 22
12-3PM

Spring Festival

Virtual festival showcasing the significance of spring in diverse cultures around the globe! Music, dance, puppet show, cooking demonstration, flower mandala making, and more. Directed by Latha Sambamurti. Family friendly! Please enjoy this virtual cultural show from home for free. The virtual festival will be streamed live here and here.

 
Coming in May!

Roots in the Park

A virtual series featuring performances, demonstrations, and interviews featuring Squirrel Butter, Briar, Ben Hunter & Joe Seamons, and Neftalí Rivera & Trio Borikuas. 
 
May-October

Sundaes Outside

Presented by Golden Bricks Events, a series of monthly virtual programs May-October with a diverse set of black guests and performers including youth, young adults and elders, black-owned vendors, artists, non-profits, and businesses. All episodes include real time captioning and live ASL interpreters.
 
     
 

2020 Virtual Programs

 
May 18

Mount St. Helens 40th Eruption Anniversary Story Circle

In partnership with the Washington State History Museum, we brought together a group of Washingtonians with deep connections to the area to share their stories of Mount St. Helens before, during, and after the blast. Archived live program accessible here.
 
July-October




July 12




Aug 9




Aug 23



Sept 6




Sept 20



Oct 4

Sundae Sermon

Presented by Golden Bricks Events, a series of spirited programs with a diverse set of black guests and performers including youth, young adults and elders, black-owned vendors, artists, non-profits, and businesses. Each event profiles a Washington State Park in the greater Seattle-Tacoma area. All episodes have a real time captioning option. The final three episodes include live ASL interpreters.

A Celebration of Joy profiles Lake Sammamish State Park and features musician Zoser, visual artist Sabella, conversations with Joe Thaddeus of Black People Hike, and Caroline Villanova of Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust, and an interpretive talk and activity by Parks Interpretive Specialist Joy Kacorowski. Archived program accessible here.

A Celebration of Community profiles Saltwater State Park and features Emcee: Lulu Carpenter, Community Organizers of Blackout Healing: Mary Hall-Williams & Reagan Jackson, members of the Friends of Saltwater State Park, a trail talk by Ranger Sage Hoag, and West African dance and drums by Kouyate Arts. Archived program accessible here

A Celebration of LGBTQIA++ profiles Dash Point State ParkFeaturing: Emcee: Naa Akua, Oshun Swim School's Chandrika Francis, Dancer, Arthur Mutijima, and musician, Joe Williams. Archived program accessible here.

A Celebration of Women profiles Federation Forest State Park and features emcee: Kellie Richardson, cellist, Gretchen Yanover, Seattle GirlTrek Organizers, Trina Baker & Mikia Cain, birders, Etta Cosey & Kintea Bryant of the Seattle Audobon Society, and Charlene Lysne of the General Federation of Women's Clubs. Archived program accessible here

A Celebration of Activism features youth emcee, Mikayla Weary hosting a youth round table with Cedella Dean and Kailyn Jordan, singer/songwriter, Elisha, and Mental Health Counselor, Jennifer Elve. Archived program accessible here!

A Celebration of Food profiles Millersylvania State Park and features emcee, Marlon Brown, poet, Kamari Bright, Rodney Hines of Metier Brewing Co., and Interpretive Specialist Aaron Webster. Archived program accessible here!


August 14-15

Indian Independence Day Celebration

Presented by Dancing Silhouette, this virtual celebration of Indian Independence Day will feature dance, music, costumes, and participants of all ages. 




Traditional Basket Weaving and Heritage

Presented by elders of the Chehalis and Skokomish Tribes, this virtual program highlights the living tradition of weaving. 
 


 

Learn more!

Enjoy this short video highlighting our Folk & Traditional Arts program and a few of the many events and programs held at parks across Washington.