Columbus Folk Music Society

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Folk Festival Returns for In-Person Family Fun!

The Central Ohio Folk Festival celebrates its 25th season May 7-8 with a return to in-person concerts, workshops, storytelling, and crafts the whole family and the whole community can enjoy. 

Once again, the setting will be the lush green grounds and trails of Highbanks Metro Park, 9466 Columbus Pike (U.S. Route 23), Lewis Center, OH.

Among the festival highlights: 

More than 30 hourly concerts on 3 different stages by soloists, duos, and groups, singing and playing guitar, mandolin, banjo, harp, and other instruments. You’ll hear a wide range of folk music -  singer-songwriter, old-time, blues, Americana, bluegrass, Latin fusion, Scottish traditional, and more … songs that often reflect the struggles of everyday people. 

• A giant 1960’s-style folk music community sing-along to open the festival. 

More than 30 workshops on songwriting, the role of folk music in social change, and how to play guitar, Irish fiddle, dulcimer, folk harp, ukulele, and other instruments. 

• A special children’s area with arts and crafts, plus an “instrument petting zoo” to let children handle folk instruments. Festival mascot Darby Duck will be on hand for the young and young-at-heart. 

Instrument making for young adults & up: Cigar Box Guitars & Box Frame Drums. 

Two drum circles where everyone, young and old alike, is invited to pound on a drum or other rhythm instrument to a mesmerizing beat. 

A storytelling session featuring local tellers plus Native American musician and storyteller Alexa Dawson. 

Informal jamming by anyone with an instrument or voice. This year’s jams will be led by groups that hold regular weekly jams in Columbus. 

For the first time, the festival will include a Beer Garden and Concessions Tent, where those 21 and older may purchase and enjoy a delicious craft beer while the music from nearby performers wafts through the air. 

Saturday, May 7 at 7 pm, in our main tent beneath a starlit sky, our Headline act, The Way Down Wanderers, will perform a special concert with strands of bluegrass, Americana, and pop music. The 5 young musicians from Illinois mix stunning vocal harmonies, complex string-band instrumentation, and compelling lyrics to create original songs that stir emotions and explore life’s mysteries. As the band’s website puts it: “They sing like angels but write songs with guts.” 

As people enter the festival grounds, we’ll welcome donations. That way, there will be no charges for the many activities, and that includes workshops, hourly concerts, jam sessions, children’s activities, and even the Saturday night headliner concert. The festival staffers are all volunteers, so 100% of the money that people contribute will help support this festival. 

For more info visit:

Donations / additional info at: 

The festival is produced by the Columbus Folk Music Society and is co- sponsored by WCBE 90.5 FM. 

For more details or to arrange media interviews, contact publicity coordinator Bill Cohen at or 614-263-3851. 


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