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Singer-Songwriters To Headline

America’s longest running folk festival

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eTN  Jun 20, 2008

The Granddaddy of them all — the country’s longest continuously-running folk festival — returns here this fall with a lineup that includes fourteen performers, free concerts, a songwriting contest, Ozarks arts and crafts booths and demonstrations, and a new feature - songwriters in the round. The 61st Annual Original Ozark Folk Festival will take place November 6-9.

“It’s a beautiful time of year in the Ozarks,” commented city special events coordinator, Janet Alexander. “America’s oldest continuous folk festival, set in our fantastic fall foliage, makes for a truly extraordinary escape.”
The weekend begins with the traditional Queens Contest in The Auditorium on November 6 at 7 p.m. Music will be provided by award-winning songwriter Noah Earle. The event is free.

Guest host for the 2008 Original Ozark Folk Festival is singer/songwriter Greg Klyma, who will perform Friday and Saturday nights at the Aud. The festival is sponsoring the release of his newest cd, Rust Belt Vagabond.

Friday night’s headliner at the Aud is Patty Larkin. Descended from a long line of Irish-American singers and taletellers, she began classical piano studies at age 7, became swept up in folk music in the 60’s, taught herself guitar and wrote songs throughout high school and college. She’s been heard nationally on radio programs including Mountain Stag and NPR’s World Café. Opening for Ms. Larkin is Vagabond Van, featuring Klyma and Tom Bianchi.

The songwriting contest, long a staple of the Ozark Folk Festival, is set for November 8 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Basin Spring Park. Prospective entrants should email Janet Alexander at The public is invited to watch and listen for free. The annual Folk Festival Parade follows at 2 p.m., winding through the streets of historic downtown.

Two “Songwriters in the Round” shows are planned for November 8. Natalia Zukerman, Danielle Miraglia, Raina Rose and Maia Archote take turns showcasing their creations from 4-6 p.m. Miraglia and Rose return for the 8 p.m. concert, joined by Klyma, Bianchi, Jonathan Byrd, John Elliott, and Chris Bradley.

“The Songwriters in the Round feature was added this year to give folks a chance to see a large number of current and rising folk stars for the price of one ticket,” Alexander explained. “I think everyone will be amazed at the quality and variety they’ll see at these shows.”

The festival will showcase local artisans and craftspeople in street-side booths. Visitors will also see demonstrations of crafts from the past, such as blacksmithing and quilting.

Additional events are being added for the festival’s final day, Sunday, November 9. For more information about the 61st Annual Original Ozark Folk Festival, visit

America’s longest running folk festival

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