Philadelphia Folk Festival

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Philadelphia Folk Festival
Philadelphia Folk Festival 2012 Steve Earle (7825960014).jpg
GenreFolk, Country, Blues, Folk rock
Datesfour days on the third week of August
Location(s)Upper Salford Township, Pennsylvania, USA
Years active1962-present
WebsiteOfficial website

The Philadelphia Folk Festival is a folk music festival held annually at Old Pool Farm in Upper Salford, Pennsylvania, in the vicinity of Philadelphia.[1]

The four-day festival, which is produced and run almost entirely by volunteers and sponsored by the non-profit Philadelphia Folksong Society, has been bringing world-class folk music to the area for more than 50 years, making it the oldest continually-run outdoor music festival in North America.[2]

The Philadelphia Folksong Society, the premiere folk organization in the greater Philadelphia region, is known nationally and internationally for producing the famous festival and bringing together generations of folk music enthusiasts.[3]

The event hosts contemporary and traditional artists in genres under the umbrella of Folk, including World/Fusion, Celtic, Singer/Songwriter, Folk Rock, Country, Klezmer, and Dance.

Gene Shay and internationally acclaimed folklorist Kenneth S. Goldstein[4] founded the festival, along with George Britton, Bob Seigel, David Baskin, Esther Halpern, and others. Shay has acted as Master of Ceremonies since its inception and Goldstein served as Program Director for the first 15 years.[5]

Originally held on Wilson Farm in Paoli, Pennsylvania,[6] each year the event hosts over 35,000 visitors and nearly 7,000 campers at the Old Pool Farm.[7] The event presents over 75 hours of music with local, regional, and national talent on 8 stages. A special Camp Stage show takes place on Thursday night, hosted by WXPN radio for the nationally syndicated World Cafe with David Dye.[7]

The campgrounds at the Philadelphia Folk Festival are sectioned off into neighboring camp communities consisting of the quieter camping section, tent camping section, and the RV/vehicle camping section. The Dulcimer Grove, located in the corner of the camping site right next to the secondary stage hosts the kid's area which presents crafts, juggling, magic, and music.

The Philadelphia Folksong Society presents the Philadelphia Folk Festival and has a full-time, year-round staff.[8] The current PFS Executive Director is Justin Nordell. Past E.D.s include Lauri Barish and Levi Landis.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Philadelphia Folk Festival Archives - Page 4 of 4 - The Key". The Key. Retrieved 18 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Philadelphia Folk Festival - Philadelphia Folksong Society". Philadelphia Folksong Society. Retrieved 2016-05-05.
  3. ^ "Philadelphia Folk Festival". Retrieved 18 December 2017.
  4. ^ Pareles, Jon (15 November 1995). "Kenneth S. Goldstein Dies at 68; Folklore Teacher and Collector". Retrieved 18 December 2017 – via
  5. ^ "Philadelphia Folk Festival: A Short History", That Music Magazine.
  6. ^ "When the Philadelphia Folk Festival Was Held in Paoli" Tredyffrin Easttown Historical Society History Quarterly Digital Archives.
  7. ^ a b "Folk On Folk: Ian Zolitor of WXPN’s Folk Show recaps the Philadelphia Folk Fest", The Key, WXPN.
  8. ^ "Philadelphia Folk Festival", Visit Philadelphia.

External links[edit]