Salt Lake City’s Living Traditions Festival is a celebration of the traditional cultures of the city and the state, now in its 29th year. See the festival website at http://livingtraditionsfestival.com for a full schedule, descriptions of craft and performing artists, and a list of 20 food vendors from a wide array of ethnic traditions. It all takes place on the grounds of the Salt Lake City and County Building, and is well worth a visit. The festival is sponsored by the Salt Lake City Arts Council, with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Utah Division of Arts & Museums, and many local funders.

At the close of the 2014 AWSF meeting in Logan, I got a lift to the Salt Lake City airport with a carful of young folklorists newly emerging into the field. For some, this was their first AWSF meeting, and talking about what we had all seen, heard, felt, tried, achieved, and wanted out of the gathering gave me a fresh perspective on this experience – my fourth gathering.  Below is just the first of four topics I captured from our talk on the plane ride home:

What is the purpose of this group and our meetings? The group was founded in the early 1980s to meet the needs of its members, Public Sector Folklorists.  While the core values and skills of this field remain relatively consistent, needs of the group have changed in accordance with other changes in the field and the nation over the last 30 years: funding streams, career opportunities, growing interest in/use of our methods by new practitioners and other fields, media formats, administrative homes and structures, to name a few. While the founding members’ original needs were to share best practices and build skills particular to the work of Folk and Traditional Arts Coordinators (public folklorists) working in State Arts Agencies, new members are seeking creative solutions for entering a field with limited job opportunities, accessing funds from new sectors, getting creative about partnerships, and helping out with policy and advocacy – issues that may not have previously existed when the field was first evolving and had more secure public funds. 
Here are some questions I am left with: Are the current needs of founding members the same as or different than they were at the outset of AWSF? Are they the same as or different than emerging professionals in the field?  How can we meet the needs of all/most attendees?
Thanks to all who participated in the annual meeting.  Thanks to WESTAF for continuing to fund our gatherings and for increasing those resources so that we can bring emerging  professionals into our discussions. Please share your thoughts…

 

Just a reminder to register by Friday, March 28, 2014 for the AWSF Annual Conference to be held April 10-12, 2014 at the University Inn and Conference Center at Utah State University in Logan, Utah. A detailed agenda is included below.

Held concurrently with the Western States Folklore Society’s annual meeting, attendees should complete the registration form and send fees to: Chrissy Deal at WESTAF, 1743 Wazee Street, Suite 300, Denver, CO 80202. Checks are payable to WESTAF; Visa and MasterCard are also accepted. Registrations may also be faxed to 303.629.9717, sent via email to chrissy.deal [at] westaf.org or by phone at 303.629.1166. (See previous post for forms.)

Attendees are invited to submit a brief bio and summary of current projects online for distribution prior to the meeting. Please complete online at http://bit.ly/1g0UstW by the March 28th deadline as well.

Hope to see you in a few weeks~

Sincerely,

The AWSF Planning Committee

AWSF 2014 FINAL Detailed Agenda

The Association of Western States Folklorists (AWSF) is pleased to open registration for its Annual Conference to be held April 10-12, 2014 at the University Inn and Conference Center at Utah State University in Logan, Utah. Held concurrently this year with the Western States Folklore Society’s annual gathering, the conference is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF).

To register, please send a completed registration form and fees no later than Friday, March 28, 2014 to: Chrissy Deal at WESTAF, 1743 Wazee Street, Suite 300, Denver, CO 80202. Checks are payable to WESTAF; Visa and MasterCard are also accepted. Registration forms may also be faxed to 303.629.9717 or sent via email to chrissy.deal [at] westaf.org. If you have any questions, feel free to call WESTAF at 303.629.1166.

Additional information about the Graze, sessions, performance, lodging and transportation is included in the accompanying AWSF 2014 conference information document. A detailed agenda will be available and posted the second week of March.

Finally, attendees are also invited to submit a brief bio and summary of current projects online for distribution prior to our April meeting. Please complete online at http://bit.ly/1g0UstW by March, 28, 2014.

Look forward to seeing you in Utah!

Sincerely,

The AWSF Planning Committee

AWSF 2014 Registration Form

AWSF 2014 Conference Information

The Association of Western States Folklorists (AWSF) invites applicants for its scholarship entitled “The Dave and Bea

Bea Roeder. Photo by Jens Lund

Bea Roeder. Photo by Jens Lund

Roeder Fund: For the Future of Public Folklore in the West.”

This fund, named in honor of the late Western folklorist Bea Roeder and her husband Dave, provides support for graduate and undergraduate students and community scholars with demonstrated interest in a career in public folklore in the American West, to attend the annual AWSF meeting. AWSF has established this Fund as a way to celebrate Bea’s life and work and to create opportunities for networking and professional development for a new generation of public folklorists and cultural workers. The fund is administered by the Alliance for California Traditional Arts (ACTA) on behalf of AWSF.

Applications can be found by clicking here for a Word document and here for a PDF, and are due by midnight on March 1, 2014.  Contact Nelda (nelda[at]gmail.com or 435-881-8313) with any application questions.  Recipient will be notified by March 15.

Transportation: Logan, Utah is 90 miles from Salt Lake City. Salt Lake Express is the only public means of transport. The round-trip fare for transportation from the airport to the University Inn in Logan UT is $64.50. Reservations may be made on-line. You can also rent a car; rental rates vary.

Lodging: The conference will be held at the University Inn and Conference Center, which is on the campus of Utah State University. Room rates with a discount for conference attendees are $69 for a double queen room. Call 800-231-5634 (or local 435-797-0017) to place a reservation. A block of 50 rooms has been reserved through March 27: it would be wise to book early as rooms may not be available after that date. Ask for the Western Folklore discount when calling to make your reservation. Visit the Conference Center site for further information. Other accommodations in Logan are available, but may require a short taxi or car ride to the university. These include:

The 2014 AWSF annual meeting will be held in Logan, Utah, on April 10-12 in conjunction with the Western States Folklore Society meeting. The main meeting days will be Friday and Saturday, April 11-12, and both organizations will have concurrent sessions. Registration for either meeting will allow access to all sessions. The Graze, a tour of local traditional sites and visits to artists, will take place on Thursday, April 10. Suggested travel days if you want to take everything is are Wednesday, April 9, and Sunday, April 13.

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