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Annual Folk Festival Keeps The Beat Going

Lowell National Historical Park

National Park News

The 21st edition of the annual Lowell Folk Festival, held from July 27th through July 29th, drew more than 150,000 visitors.

The park, a producing partner with The City of Lowell, National Council for the Traditional Arts, The Greater Merrimack Valley Visitor and Convention Bureau, and the Lowell Festival Foundation, celebrated the festival in grand style, keeping the beat with folk, food, and fun.

Twenty-four traditional performance groups provided music and more at six stages. From Brazilian forró to New England country music, audiences clapped their hands and kicked up their feet while enjoying the diverse offerings. The skilled handiwork of fifteen New England craftspeople was showcased along Lucy Larcom Park. Families participated in music-making and street games along Shattuck Street.

This year’s highlights included:

George Price, currently superintendent at Cape Cod National Seashore, continued for the 21st year as the festival parade leader with Marcos Santos and the high energy, crowd-pleasing Brazilian percussion ensemble BatukAxé.

  • A new partner joined the producing partners of the Lowell Folk Festival this year. The Greater Merrimack Valley Visitor and Convention Bureau threw their marketing strength in to help promote the festival with their broad media contacts and network of communications outlets.
  • This year’s media coverage extended well beyond the region to the world with the help of Lowell Telecommunications Corporation webcast abilities to do live web streaming of three of the six festival stages.
  • A new performance location was unveiled at the Dutton Street Dance Pavilion, as well as the new street activities and juried art exhibition areas.
  • Cultural organizations from the Lowell area once again provided the unique taste of the Lowell Folk Festival through the ethnic food sales made available throughout the festival. Polish, Greek, Lao, African-American and many more menus were offered.

  • Music rang out, hungers were satisfied with tastes from around the world, donation buckets were filled, and the Festival rolled along with something for everyone. Additional ranger support was provided by Boston NHP, Minute Man NHP and Salem Maritime NHS for crowd and visitor safety.

    Stories about the festival can be found at these media links:


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