Door County Folk Festival Continues Tradition

The 29th annual Door County Folk Festival started on Wednesday, July 9 and will continue through July 13. More than 60 different events are scheduled for the five-day weekend, ranging from dance, music and singing workshops, to dance parties, dance demonstrations, children’s activities, and a fish boil dinner in the Sister Bay Park on Saturday followed by music and dancing on the Sister Bay pier.

The festival was founded in 1980 by local musician Gerhard Bernhard who also operates Handverks Music & Harp Center. Bernhard was involved in international folk dancing while living in Chicago and missed that activity after moving to Door County. He thought the charming setting of a Door County village would be a good place for an ethnic festival.

Mainly through the efforts and talents of co-director Paul Collins, well-known ethnic dance teacher of Chicago, the festival has evolved into a well-respected and popular folk dance event. Every year it brings several hundred folk dance enthusiasts from across the US, Canada and overseas to the shores of Green Bay for a long July weekend.

Most of the action of the festival is centered in or near the Sister Bay Village Hall. Workshops will also take place at the Ephraim Village Hall, the Baileys Harbor Town Hall and First Baptist Church in Sister Bay.

This year’s festival will feature 25 dance workshops. There are 17 top-notch dance instructors from around the US, Canada, Czech Republic and Bulgaria who will teach a variety of ethnic folk dances from around the world. These dance instructors will bring extensive teaching experience in a variety of ethnic and international dances to the festival.

Detailed listings of what will be taught in each workshop can be found on the DCFF website and will be available at the Sister Bay Village Hall throughout the festival. For more information call 920.421.2986.