Shawano Folk Music Festival still strumming along

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More than 40 years ago, a group of local volunteers believed music had the power to break barriers and build connections.

They put a few musicians up on the back of a wagon, and the Shawano folk Music Festival was born.

The festival is still going strong today. The festival is shorter this year and moved from its traditional location due to covid restrictions. However, Cary Fellman, one of the original founders in 1979, says in all the ways that matter, the festival has stayed much the same.

“It’s kept that family feeling,” Fellman explains. “Children are very safe and watched over and the whole thing is very much the way we hoped it would be all those years ago.”

Fellman says another unique aspect of the annual event is the local hospitality.  Many festival volunteers still open their homes to host the performers over the weekend.

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