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Richmond Folk Festival Releases Dates, Artists for 2016


For Immediate Release
Press contact: Kelly Vance   


June 2, 2016

Richmond, Va. - Music lovers from around the Commonwealth will be excited to learn that preparations for the 12th annual Richmond Folk Festival are well underway.

Venture Richmond today released the first group of artists slated to perform on seven stages along downtown Richmond’s historic riverfront the weekend of October 7-9, 2016. A complete list of artists, including those to be featured on the Virginia Folklife Stage, as well as hands-on activities in the CarMax Family Area organized by the Children’s Museum of Richmond, will be announced later this summer.

“Our local programming committee has outdone themselves, once again,” said festival director Lisa Sims. “Dancers from Sri Lanka, zydeco players from Louisiana, virtuosic musicians from Afghanistan, gospel singers from Tennessee and dozens of others will all offer free performances within a half-mile of each other. There's really nothing else like it in the Virginia.”

The free, three-day music event is the most popular of its kind in the nation. Last year, a record-breaking 200,000+ people attended the festival, up 50,000 from a rainy 2014.

Among the artists to be featured at the 2016 Richmond Folk Festival are:

The Richmond Folk Festival remains free to the public, due in large part to volunteers, individual donors and corporate sponsors, including: Altria, Dominion, WestRock Foundation, Community Foundation, Union Bank & Trust, University of Richmond, VCU Health, CarMax, Richmond Times-Dispatch, NewMarket and Genworth.

“It never ceases to amaze how the festival comes together year after year,” Sims said. “We are so grateful for the support of our partners and volunteers. It is because of them that the Richmond Folk Festival continues to thrive.”

Volunteers are now being accepted for the Bucket Brigade and for other Richmond Folk Festival jobs, from backstage management to beverage sales. To sign up, or to learn more about the 2016 Richmond Folk Festival, visit


About The Richmond Folk Festival
The Richmond Folk Festival is one of Virginia's largest events, drawing visitors from all over the country to downtown Richmond's historic riverfront. The Festival is a FREE three-day event that got its start as the NCTA’s National Folk Festival, held in Richmond from 2005-2007. In the tradition of the "National," the Richmond Folk Festival features excellent performing groups representing a diverse array of cultural traditions on seven stages. The festival includes continuous music and dance performances, a Virginia Folklife Area featuring ongoing demonstrations, an interactive Family Area produced by the Children's Museum of Richmond, a folk art marketplace, regional and ethnic foods, festival merchandise and more. Additional information is available at

About Venture Richmond
The Festival is produced by Venture Richmond, in a continuing partnership with the National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA), the City of Richmond, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, the National Park Service, The American Civil War Center, and the Children’s Museum of Richmond. Venture Richmond is a non-profit organization formed to engage business and community leaders in partnering with the City to enhance the vitality of the community, particularly Downtown, through economic development, marketing, promotion, advocacy and events. Venture Richmond also produces such long-standing and signature community events as Easter on Parade, Friday Cheers, RVA Fireworks on the James, and the 2nd Street Festival, and partners with the Richmond Sportsbackers to co-produce Dominion Riverrock. For more information visit

About the National Council for the Traditional Arts
The National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the presentation and documentation of folk and traditional arts in the United States. Founded in 1933, it is the nation's oldest folk arts organization. The NCTA presents the nation's very finest traditional artists in festivals, tours, international cultural exchanges, workshops, demonstrations and exhibitions, media productions, school programs, and other activities. It works in partnership with communities across America to establish new, sustainable traditional arts events that deliver lasting social, cultural, and economic benefits. For more about the NCTA, visit


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