This summer, international dancers and musicians are slated to come to Kanab August 5-7 for the inaugural Canyons Folk Festival. The festival will consist of three days of exciting performances and cultural activities.

Currently, the Kanab Arts Board is in contact with performing troupes from The Republic of Georgia, Croatia, Mexico, Togo, Poland and Taiwan.

Russell and Lyndsey Wulfenstein, who are heading up the festival, have performed in 16 countries participating in festivals with BYU’s International Folk Dance Ensemble (where the couple met) and with Clog America. After graduating, the couple served with the World Folkfest Board in Springville, Utah, for seven years, helping to bring international dancers and musicians to Utah.

Russell Wulfenstein sums up the international folk festival experience, “These events are truly life changing. Everyone involved gains new perspective, makes new friends, and leaves a better person with a deeper understanding for the people of the world and those things that bring us together.”

In addition to enjoying live performances from first-rate performers, locals have the opportunity to host international performers in their homes. Wulfenstein explains, “These performers have often saved for years to pay for flights to come to America to perform and experience this part of the world. The performers personally cover all of the expenses involved in getting to the country and volunteer their time as performers. The festivals typically reciprocate by providing bus transportation, as well as room and board. This is where host families are able to make a tremendous difference. Without them, these types of festivals just wouldn’t be possible.”

The festival is currently looking for business sponsors and private donors who would like to help bring this unique cultural opportunity to Kanab. Based on funding secured so far, the festival has extended an official invitation to the Republic of Georgia and is working to be able bring more of the international teams which have expressed a desire to participate.  Please contact Russell Wulfenstein to learn more about how you can become a supporter: russellwulfenstein@gmail.com.

Join the celebration August 5-7, in Kanab. Learn more at canyonsfolkfest.com.