Black Hawk Folk Society’s day-long Folk Music Festival to be held July 13

Black Hawk Folk Society proudly presents its 32nd annual folk music festival this Saturday, July 13 in Mt. Morris’ beautiful lakeside Town Park on County G in Mount Morris. An open mic from 10:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. will kick-start the morning. Acoustic musicians are invited to perform a couple favorite tunes. For more information about the open mic, please contact Guy at 715-228-3662 or gk500@yahoo.com.

Bill Kehl will serve as master of ceremonies. Bill has served this role for more years than anyone can remember. One part musician, one part raconteur, one part curator of his collection of musical instruments from throughout the world and the music of numerous cultures, he will keep the music coming.

Eric Lewis takes the stage at noon for the first hour-long set. Eric is an accomplished session musician on the Memphis scene, as well as a successful touring artist who knows his way around numerous stringed instruments. Folk, blues, and mountain music fill his set-list. Sample and learn more at https://ericlewismemphis.com.

Cris and Ann Plata follow at 1:10 p.m. These singer-songwriters will share tunes that reflect their love and respect for original country folk and Mexican roots music, and are also among the ways Cris tells a life story. Cris on the guitar, Ann on bass, both offering vocals, are not to be missed. Visit https://crisplata.com to hear and learn more.

Next up, Mecan River Ramblers at 2:20 p.m. Bonded by their devotion to acoustic and bluegrass music, these five Wisconsin musicians have been pleasing their audiences for a dozen plus years. Expect contemporary and traditional blue grass, along with other musical influences. Take a look and a listen for yourself at https://www.mecanriverramblers.com.

Michael Peter Smith steps up to the mic at 3:30 p.m. Famous and loved for many songs, this Chicago-based singer-songwriter has been performing for nearly sixty years. Check him out at https://michaelpetersmith.com/index.html and you’ll agree with a Rolling Stone tribute listing him as among the greatest songwriters in the English language.

Claudia Russell and Bruce Kaplan continue the festival line-up at 4:40 p.m. This duo has delighted audiences for more than a decade with Claudia’s vocals, backed up by Bruce on guitar and mandolin. Both are gifted performers, with many talents in many areas. Visit https://www.claudiarussell.com/about.html for more information.

Escaping Pavement’s per-formance will close out the day from 5:50 – 7 p.m. This duo has done it all, from performing top forty hits on a cruise ship back in the day to last summer’s Zion Canyon Music Festival at the entrance to Zion Canyon National Park. Plan on a wonderful mix of folk, roots, and Americana served to you via mandolin, acoustic guitar, and vocals. For more information, go to http://escapingpavement.com.

Purchase your festival tickets in advance by contacting Tom at 920-358-4565 or tomstraydog@aim.com; or Joanne at 920-293-4455.  Tickets may also be purchased at the gate.

Picnicking is welcome and concessions will be available from the Mt. Morris Pioneers 4-H Club. The festival hosts an arts and craft fair. If you are an artisan or crafter, please visit blackhawkfolk.org to review and download a registration form; or contact Judy at 608-586-4317 for more information.  A registration fee includes festival admission for two adults.

Weather permitting, the festival is held outdoors. The rain site is Mountain View Community Center, located at N3137 21st Lane, at the intersection of 21st Lane and Highway 152, just south of Mt. Morris and six miles northeast of Wautoma.  Check Black Hawk’s FB page and website for weather-related updates.

Blankets or lawn chairs, sunscreen, hats, and insect repellant are suggested. Pets are not allowed. Mt. Morris Park includes playground equipment and a swimming beach, making this a family-friendly event. Parking is free and on site, and the park is handicap friendly.