A coming-together of culture, tradition, and ideas, this year’s Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington D.C. promises to be bigger and better than ever before.

“The goal of the Festival is to strengthen and preserve these traditions by presenting them on the National Mall. Tradition-bearers and the public can connect with and learn from one another and, in a respectful way, begin to understand cultural differences and similarities,” says the Smithsonian Museum.

The festival is said to be a giant block-party for all who wish to attend. It will feature special events, evening concerts, cultural demonstrations, storytelling, and discussion of cultural issues. Each festival draws 1 million visitors and over the years has brought 23,000 musicians, artists, performers, craftspeople, workers, cooks, and storytellers together.

The festival is broken down into three major themes. This years themes are “Campus and Community,” “Citified: Arts and Creativity East of the Anacostia River,” and “Creativity and Crisis: Unfolding The AIDS Memorial Quilt.”

The festival is open free to the public and will run from June 27 to July 1 and July 4 to July 8. Check out more about the events and features at its website http://www.festival.si.edu.

Need a place to stay while you are visiting the capital, or maybe planning a weekend around the event? Check out the Best Weekends’ favorites on the very best of Washington D.C.
Ellen Studer

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