Last year, when we talked to the president of the Broward Folk Club, Arlene Boumel, she insisted that South Florida has a very vibrant folk community. And it's true. Though appropriate venues may seem less than abundant, it's likely that you or your parents have catgut a folk act playing live in the past month. Think about it. Yeah, right? They're popping up everywhere.
And if you haven't, then this weekend is the perfect time to catch your inner folk fan up on the latest and greatest acts out there. The South Florida Folk Festival is figuratively firing up Hugh Taylor Birch State Park in Fort Lauderdale with a singer-songwriter competition, workshops, craft vendors, and 40 live acts that include local scene stalwart Ellen Bukstel and out of towners like Nashville's Melissa Greener.
The event has been put on by the Broward Folk Club since 1992, and is both family friendly and dedicated to ecological preservation. A cosponsor of this year's event is STOP (Sea Turtle Oversight Protection) which protects the habitats of sea turtles. The website explains succinctly what the goal of all this is: "to preserve our rich American heritage/tradition of song and story into the next century." And our songs and stories must include preservation if we want to keep singing on this planet.
Below is the lineup for 2015. Make sure to bring the kids, your guitars, and pipes -- as in lungs, friends, lungs.
2015 South Florida Folk Festival Full Lineup
2 Guys (Former Members of The Highwaymen) - (Boca Raton, FL/Coconut Creek, FL)
Alan Bradford - (Fort Myers, FL)
Brad Cole - (Chicago, IL/New York City, NY)
Carlos and Carlos - (Tallahassee, FL)
Dave Rowe - (Portland, ME)
Eileen Kozloff - (Sarasota, FL)
Elaine Mahon - (Gainesville, FL)
Ellen Bukstel - (Southwest Ranches, FL)
Freebo - (California Hot Springs, CA)
Friction Farm - (Greenville, SC)
Heather Pierson - (Conway, NH)
James Welton - (Miami, FL)
Jed Marum and Rickey Pittman - (Dallas, TX/Monroe, LA)
Jefferson Ross - (Atlanta, GA)
Jennifer Hajj - (Idyllwild, CA)
Jennings & Keller - (Homestead, FL)
Jon Brooks - (Toronto, Ontario)
Josh Joffen - (Westbury, NY)
Kiya Heartwood - (Austin, TX)
Lara Herscovitch - (Durham, CT)
Lauren Heintz - (Winter Park, FL)
Mara Levine - (Edison, NJ)
Marci Geller - (Stony Brook, NY)
Mare Wakefield and Nomad - (Nashville, TN)
Marie Nofsinger - (Delray Beach, FL)
Matt Harlan & Rachel Jones - (Houston, TX)
Melissa Greener - (Nashville, TN)
Murray Palmetto's South Florida Swamp Show - (South Florida)
Paddy Mills - (Cape Elizabeth, ME)
Pinkslip Duo - (Delray Beach, FL/Boynton Beach, FL)
Rod MacDonald - (Delray Beach, FL)
Shane Myers - (Orange Park, FL)
Spirit Wing - (Phoenixville, PA)
Steve Chizmadia - (Westchester, NY)
Zoe Mulford - (Swarthmore, PA/Manchester, United Kingdom)
2015 South Florida Folk Festival, 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday, January 17 and noon to 8, Sunday, January 19, at Hugh Taylor Birch State Park, 3109 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale. Visit southfloridafolkfest.net.