Washington Square Park Folk Festival Returns Sunday, August 27th | 13 Years at the Park

The Washington Square Park Folk Festival first took place at the park in 2011. Now an annual event, it was the brainchild of former WSP Administrator Rebecca Ferguson (three Park Administrators back!). As an NYC Parks Department employee, Ferguson had the idea of holding a folk music event in the park, with a nod to Washington Square’s esteemed music history. Ferguson first connected with Matt Umanov of the venerated Greenwich Village guitar shop (the physical store has since closed but they maintain a web site where they sell guitars and offer “guitar restoration and repair” by appointment) who introduced her to musician Eli Smith. Smith organized the first and subsequent festivals, along with Jalopy Theater, and has continued his involvement in the event each year.

Ferguson left the job (quietly) in 2012 — but the Folk Festival has continued on – now year 13! It didn’t happen in 2020, due to Covid, of course. This year it again takes place at Garibaldi Plaza on Sunday, August 27th from 1 – 6 p.m. There is a Square Dance! And it′s free!

square dance washington square park folk festival

You can read an interview I did in Year One with Eli Smith introducing the Folk Festival in 2011.

Schedule for Sunday, August 27th:

1:00pm – Elijah Wald
1:45pm – Gabriel Mayers
2:30pm – Piedmont Bluz
3:15pm – Eli Smith
4:00pm – Los Guachinangos
5:00pm – Brass Queens

Come on down!

The original poster from 2011 had pigeons on the Arch!
The original poster from 2011 had pigeons on the Arch!

Link to WSP Folk Festival official page.

Previous coverage at Washington Square Park Blog (interviews with Eli Smith):

Washington Square Park Folk Festival – Interview with Organizer Eli Smith | Photos from First Day September 18, 2011

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