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Hearts Abound at the Folk School

Hearts Abound at the Folk School

The Folk School community has always come together to support one another during challenging times. Inspired by the efforts of essential frontline workers, we have created Hearts at Work, a new Folk School project to acknowledge and show our gratitude for front line workers during the COVID-19 crisis.

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    Tune Into Virtual Morningsong Every Friday

    Tune Into Virtual Morningsong Every Friday

    Join us every Friday morning on Facebook Live for Virtual Morningsong. It's a great way to start the day! To watch live, all you have to do is visit our Facebook Page at 7:45–8:15 a.m. on Fridays. If you miss a Morningsong, or want to re-watch, you can view the recordings by following the links in the artists section below.

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      Join Us for Our Virtual Appalachian Traditions Discussion Series

      Join Us for Our Virtual Appalachian Traditions Discussion Series

      Appalachian Traditions is our free webinar discussion series with instructors from our master-artist-led series on traditional Appalachian craft. These hour-long conversations provide a space for instructors in traditional craft to share their personal stories and discuss their creative process. Register for our next talk or view recordings.

        In the Garden

        Farmer Teddy Discusses Companion Planting

        Farmer Teddy Discusses Companion Planting

        Curious about companion gardening? Can you guess what the main purpose of a cover crop is? Watch Farmer's Teddy's latest garden video to find out! Take a look at a section of the Folk School Garden and hear about the benefits of interplanting and companion planting.

          News and Updates

          Schedule & FAQs: June 25 Update

          Schedule & FAQs: June 25 Update

          After careful consideration, we have made the difficult decision to cancel all previously scheduled classes and events, including Fall Festival, concerts and dances through the rest of 2020. Read our complete June 25 update which includes our Cancellation Refund Policy and FAQs.

            Artist Resources

            Coming Together: COVID-19 Artist Resources

            Coming Together: COVID-19 Artist Resources

            We are encouraged by the outpouring of support and concern for the craft community as we learn about resources for artists during these times. We have compiled a list of COVID-19 resources available for artists here. If you have additional information and would like to contribute to this list, please post a comment below.

              Community Resources

              Coming Together: COVID-19 Community Resources

              Coming Together: COVID-19 Community Resources

              As we enter a new normal, we are discovering ways to support our neighbors during these trying times. We feel it's essential to stay connected and to share information about ways our community can give and receive support. We have created this community resource list and will continue to update it as we learn new information.

                Folklife Resources

                Coming Together: COVID-19 Folklife Resources

                Coming Together: COVID-19 Folklife Resources

                While we continue to monitor COVID-19 updates, we have been overwhelmed by the resources we've found providing assistance to folklife organizations, artists, and storytellers. We have compiled this list of COVID-19 folklife resources so that others can continue to share their stories, crafts, and rich cultural heritage during this time.

                  Community Voices

                  Another Weave in the Basket that Connects Us All by David Baker

                  Another Weave in the Basket that Connects Us All by David Baker

                  David Baker recently traveled to the South Carolina coast and had a joyous reunion with Sarah Edwards-Hammond, sweetgrass basket maker and Folk School instructor. We asked David about this magical afternoon. We love to see friendships and connections created on campus and in the studio. Folk School friends last a lifetime!

                    Fund-A-Need Program

                    Folk School Stories: Jo Haas

                    Folk School Stories: Jo Haas

                    “Magical.” That’s how Jo Haas describes the first time she visited our beloved Folk School. Five years ago, Jo was looking for an immersive experience that would really help her unplug from her busy life as CEO of the non-profit Kentucky Science Center.

                      Featured Recipe

                      Spring Green Soup

                      Spring Green Soup

                      In the springtime, the 300 acres that comprise John C. Campbell Folk School turn at least 300 colors and that’s just the greens. There is not enough paint to capture it although we try. The winter passed, the woods and garden erupt and we are reminded to eat greens. Spring gardens are filled with tender lettuces and early spring vegetables including broccoli, green onions and carrots.

                        Order The Folk School Cookbook

                        The Folk School Cookbook

                        The Folk School Cookbook

                        Author Nanette Davidson meticulously collected, curated, and adapted over 200 delicious recipes for The Folk School Cookbook. These include some of the most memorable recipes served family-style in the school’s Dining Hall and at seasonal celebrations over the decades. Bring the Folk School's culinary traditions into your own kitchen and order your copy today!

                          RECENT STORIES

                          I Made a Classic Appalachian-style Ladderback Chair with Lyle Wheeler

                          I Made a Classic Appalachian-style Ladderback Chair with Lyle Wheeler

                          Lyle Wheeler, a longtime Folk School instructor in both Woodworking and Blacksmithing, is a treasure of the Folk School. The week I spent years ago, building a ladderback chair with Lyle, changed the way I think about craft and my own capabilities as a maker. I am excited that later this month Lyle will be giving a Zoom presentation on June 15 as part of the Folk School’s Appalachian Traditions Discussion series. I encourage you to tune into his talk, and learn from this wonderful self-proclaimed “all-around “good ol’ boy” from Millers Creek, North Carolina.”

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                          Watch Leah Dolgoy Play Morningsong from Montreal

                          Watch Leah Dolgoy Play Morningsong from Montreal

                          On Friday, May 29, the sweet-stringed sounds of Leah Dolgoy’s autoharp filled Folk School ears with joy and magic for our Facebook Live Morningsong. If you missed the live show, be sure to watch the recording via the link posted here in our blog post. Also, enjoy an interview with Leah, originally published in 2016.

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                          If You Want to Sing Out, Sing Out with Aubrey Atwater

                          If You Want to Sing Out, Sing Out with Aubrey Atwater

                          Using clogging, music, and storytelling to charm Folk School audiences since 1996, Aubrey Atwater exudes a talent, grace, and humor unique to the most talented of performers. She teaches traditional music and dance regularly at the Folk School and while classes are on hiatus, Aubrey joined us for a virtual discussion on Monday, May 18 as part of our Appalachian Traditions discussion series. View the recording of the talk and also enjoy an interview with Aubrey.

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                          What’s An Artist to Do?

                          What’s An Artist to Do?

                          June Rollins shares a video she made for her watercolor class and gives us some tips for artists while staying at home.

                          “Like many of us, Rob, my husband, and I have been at home since Mid-March. The first couple of weeks it felt like I had taken early retirement. I was scheduled to teach my first, week-long watercolor class at the Folk School, March 29–April 4, 2020. It didn’t happen. My class was just one of many that had to be canceled. I had planned on sharing the painting steps of “Made For The Sun,” with my class. Instead, I’d like to share them with you in the video slideshow below.”

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                          Tips for a Late Freeze in the Garden

                          Tips for a Late Freeze in the Garden

                          A May Mother’s Day frost is late for our region. When temperatures get down to below freezing, learn what I do in the Folk School Garden to prevent damage and to protect the young plants. Also, stay tuned to the end of the video to see my tips for your home gardens.

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                          Shearing Day at Martha’s Farm & A Prize for All

                          Shearing Day at Martha’s Farm & A Prize for All

                          The days have pushed themselves along since the birth of our three brave lambs born to “Robin” on March 6th. When they arrived, I did not call them anything much. I just looked at them, noted their shape and health and desire to eat, and thought, Those three, they are the ones without names!

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                          A Look Back at Folk School May Day Celebrations

                          A Look Back at Folk School May Day Celebrations

                          Wishing you a happy May Day! We’re looking forward to dancing around the May Pole together again, but until then, we put together this post filled with photos of years past, a video from 2011, and an excerpt by Nanette Davidson about May Day from The Folk School Cookbook. Enjoy!

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                          #GivingTuesdayNow = Generosity Now

                          #GivingTuesdayNow = Generosity Now

                          Jerry Jackson, Folk School Executive Director, talks about “Giving Tuesday Now” a global day of giving as an emergency response to the need caused by COVID-19.#GivingTuesdayNow is a day of giving and unity that will take place on May 5 as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19.

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                          Late April Garden Tour

                          Late April Garden Tour

                          Enjoy a tour of the late April Folk School Garden. The tour includes a look at early cucumbers, melons, zuchinni, and summer squash. We are still harvesting salad greens and the beets are almost ready to pull up too. The tomatoes are planted and strawberries are just turning from pink to red. We are still using some hoops to cover some of the crops on chilly nights. The new cut flower section is looking good with early cosmos, zinnia, and snapdragon starts.

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                          Cannon County Basket Tradition with Sue Williams

                          Cannon County Basket Tradition with Sue Williams

                          Sue Williams is recognized for the preservation of the Cannon County white oak basket making tradition, one of the most renowned basket making traditions in the United States. Sue’s commitment to education, advocacy, and teaching the tradition has secured a future for the this style beyond the original basket making families of Cannon County, Tennessee. We are delighted to have Sue teach the Cannon County white oak basket style regularly at the Folk School.

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                          Spring Garden Tour with Farmer Teddy

                          Spring Garden Tour with Farmer Teddy

                          Happy Earth Day everyone! Usually during Earth Week, we celebrate Mother Earth’s amazing treasures with programming connected to nature. This year we invite you to take a walk around the Folk School Garden with Farmer Teddy.

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                          How to Make Sourdough English Muffins with Emily Buehler

                          How to Make Sourdough English Muffins with Emily Buehler

                          Sourdough English muffins are a great recipe to make when you feed your sourdough starter. The preferment includes a dash of sugar, while the main dough recipe includes baking soda. Both of these ingredients help the dough rise, meaning that the recipe should work even if your starter is a bit past its prime or you don’t do the greatest job at kneading.

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                          With Spring, Comes Lambs! What to Name Them?

                          With Spring, Comes Lambs! What to Name Them?

                          I was sort of joking when I decided at the end of last year that a sheep should be in every conversation. This joke coupled itself with the sad thought that there are so many things that I can’t fix, so why not talk about sheep?

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                          The Perfect Cake for Easter

                          The Perfect Cake for Easter

                          Featured in The Folk School Cookbook this lovely cake is perfect for Easter, May Day, or Mother’s Day, a wedding or baby shower or a spring birthday. It’s both beautiful and scrumptious and tastes like the very epitome of spring. If, for no other reason, you want to simply make it to mark the season, share it proudly and lovingly with friends and family.

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                          Fantastic Recycled Plastic Art: An Interview with David Edgar

                          Fantastic Recycled Plastic Art: An Interview with David Edgar

                          Imagine transforming your trash into treasure by creating fantastic plastic creatures and whimsical designs with recycled plastic. David Edgar, an artist who sculpted in steel for 30 years, now creates stunning pieces in plastic and he can teach you to do it too in his upcoming class: Fantastic Recycled Plastic. Lets get to know David a little more and discover the world of plastic art. Enjoy our interview!

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                          Writing Memories into Family Histories: An Interview with Robin Edgar

                          Writing Memories into Family Histories: An Interview with Robin Edgar

                          When you take a Folk School class, you never know who you will meet. Last fall, I had the pleasure of sitting next to Robin Edgar in the herbalism class during Shaker Week. I learned that she and her husband, David Edgar, have been teaching classes at the Folk School since 1996! Robin teaches writing and David teaches the unique craft of turning recycled plastic into fantastic creations. This year, they are both teaching during Earth Week, April 19–24, 2020. In her upcoming class, Turning Fond Memories into Family Histories, students will discover how to use sights, sounds, and even smells to recall and record meaningful memories.

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                          Fire and Light

                          Fire and Light

                          The Sunday sun was sinking behind the Blue Ridge Mountains when my husband Randy and I arrived at the world-renowned John C. Campbell Folk School. It was the beginning of a week of classes set against the backdrop of purple mountain peaks and green valleys dotted with hay bales.

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                          Looking Back to 2010

                          Looking Back to 2010

                          Much has been accomplished at the Folk School in the last ten years. Instead of noting the many changes that have taken place we thought it would be interesting to look back to the year that started us on this decade long journey.

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