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Folk Festivals in Oberlin and Kirtland, Ohio, This Weekend

Festival season is upon us, and Northeast Ohio hosts two events this weekend for fans of traditional music.

The 13th annual Oberlin Folk Festival kicks off tomorrow, May 6, at Cat in the Cream Coffeehouse on the campus of Oberlin College and Conservatory. A highlight of the Friday concert is a performance by the Dust Busters, an old-time string band based in Brooklyn, N.Y. Capping off the evening will be a contra dance sponsored by the Oberlin Contra Dance Club. The festival continues Saturday, May 7, with more performances by local and student acts. You can view the full schedule here. Admission is free.

From the far, far west side of Cleveland, we go to the far, far east side for the inaugural Blue Sky Folk Festival, at the East Shore Unitarian Universalist Church, in Kirtland, Ohio, on Saturday, May 7. Performers include Hal Walker, Hu$hmoney, Dale Rodgers, and the Workmen's Circle Klezmer Orchestra, with storytelling by Robin Echols Cooper and clog dancing by Laura Lewis Kovac. The event flier encourages attendees to bring an instrument. Admission is $8.

From what I understand, the Oberlin Folk Festival is more centered on the performances, whereas it appears the Blue Sky Festival is showcasing its opportunities for jamming. If you visit one of these festivals, be sure to report back about your experiences here in the comments.

***UPDATE***

A couple hours south of the festivals in Oberlin and Kirtland is the Central Ohio Folk Festival at the Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park near Columbus. The event features performances, workshops and jamming. Daytime concerts and children's activities are free, but the Saturday evening concert is $15 and two days of workshops is $35 (includes Saturday evening concert fee).

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  2. This year's second annual Blue Sky Folk Festival is coming to Kirtland on May 19, 2012, www.blueskyfolkfest.com. See you there, in the far, far east . . .

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