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KSU folk fest to be held in the fall

Published: July 9, 1997 12:00 AM

By Julie PavelichRecord-Courier staff writerAfter 30 years of delighting thousands of people in the Kent Student Centerand Kent State University Auditorium, the annual KSU Folk Festival is movingout _ literally.In an effort to attract even more visitors and to better promote folk music,the three-day event will jump from February to September and be held outdoorson the KSU campus.The 31st festival will take place Sept. 12 to 14 with concerts to be heldon the KSU Commons and workshops outside at several locations.``The popularity of the festival has just exploded. We probably had about5,000 to 7,000 people last year ... every one of our workshop rooms waspacked with people,'' said Tom Simpson, KSU events and activities coordinator.``That was in February when it is cold, and we realized that is not themost ideal situation for a festival of this size.''The festival, which started in 1967 to celebrate folk music and featurednationally known artists Judy Collins and Gordon Lightfoot, has grown toinclude musicians from throughout the world.``The popularity of folk music is back on the upswing in a major way asa number of popular folk artists are being played on the alternative (radio)stations,'' Simpson said. ``We are trying to look at acts and see who willthey appeal to because we want something for everybody.''As in other years, the festival will feature evening concerts Friday andSaturday beginning at 6 p.m. However, a Sunday night show also will takeplace this year. All of the concerts will be on the Commons and will cost$10 for KSU students and $15 for others. KSU's All Campus Programming Boardis booking acts and expects tickets to be on sale by Aug. 1, Simpson said.``We will try to have a Kent person, whether it be a student, alumni, facultymember of resident, in each concert performance,'' Simpson said. ``Therewill be local, regional, national and international performers ... up andcoming people as well as some who are real legends.''In addition to the concerts, the festival will continue its tradition ofoffering a variety of free musical workshops from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept.13 and 14. They will be held outdoors throughout the center of campus, includingon Manchester Field.``This is the second longest running folk festival on a college campus inthe United States,'' Simpson said. ``This festival has developed into whatI consider to be the premier folk event in the state ... and moving outdoorsseemed to be the next logical step.''ACPB also is considering having a one-day traditional folk festival in February,he said.


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