The 50th Annual Smoky Mountain Folk Festival will be held at Lake Junaluska Conference & Retreat Center on Friday, August 30, and Saturday, August 31. Both nights will include a rich variety of the region’s finest traditional musicians and dancers, including fiddlers, banjo players, string bands, ballad singers, buck dancers and square dance teams. More than a dozen dance teams will perform as well as more than 25 musical acts.
Joe Sam Queen, State House Representative in the North Carolina General Assembly, has been involved with the festival since the inaugural one, which was held in the gym and football stadium at Waynesville High School. “We try to give a stage to as much of the authentic mountain music as we can,” he says. “But we’re not absolute about it. All good musicians have many influences, including good folk musicians.”
The main shows begin at 6:30 p.m. on the grand stage of Stuart Auditorium overlooking Lake Junaluska. Concert tickets will be available and are included in lodging packages at Lake Junaluska. “Smoky Mountain Folk Festival is such an authentic expression of this region’s culture,” says Ken Howle, executive director of Lake Junaluska. “We are glad to be part of this celebration of our heritage.”